What is really going to be on people's minds during AdvaMed: The MedTech Conference? Get the scoop on hot topics like innovation, VC funding, the job sector, reimbursement, and user fees.

September 1, 2011

2 Min Read
Cocktail Chatter: MedTech Jobs, Policy, VC Angels—What to Talk about at AdvaMed’s 2011 Conference

AdvaMed’s 2011 MedTech Conference, held September 26-28, 2011, is a huge opportunity to get first-hand accounts of what’s really going on in the medical device sector, as well as a chance to hobnob with some pretty high-profile CEOs. “I don’t think that there is any other single way you could reach regulators, industry stakeholders, patient groups, and venture capitalists all in one place,” says Kenny Mendez, CAO of AdvaMed. 

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Must-Read: The Rise of MedTech —Innovation, economy, and legislation are explored in a comprehensive and clear manner by author Kevin O'Keeffe.

MDUFA: Industry, FDA Continue to Negotiate User Fees, MDUFA —Jim Dickinson says industry wants clarity in policy before fee assessments.

Investment Trends: Venture Capitalists Invest More in Device Industry in Second Quarter—Medical device companies attracted $841 million in venture capital funding in the second quarter of 2011, a 26% bump from the previous quarter.

Small Firms: 510(k) Process is Harder on Small Companies—Its a longer line for the little guy.

Mendez spoke with me this morning about what he thinks will be the big topics of conversation. He says healthcare reform and FDA policies are at the top of the list, particularly with regard to user fees and reimbursement. “Our industry is in negotiations with [FDA], reauthorizing the MDUFA agreement, and we are working toward a solution that will support industry and get products to patients in a timely way that is also safe and effective. Folks want greater clarity on how those negotiations are progressing.”

Business is also going to be a big topic of discussion. “I think that folks are bullish on industry as long as we can get some of the issues with FDA straightened out," says Mendez. “We’re focusing on small companies, in particular how to get through the regulatory process, how to raise capital, and how to get products to market.” Business development experts, including executives, angel investors, private equity fund managers, and venture capitalists from 75 companies/firms, will be on hand to help shape those conversations.

I'm also looking forward to hearing President George W. Bush, Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels, and Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley speak at the plenary sessions.

I’m betting that at least one of these luminaries will cover the jobs market. “There is a lot of talk about jobs these days, and it is important to remember that this is a U.S. industry,” says Mendez. “In the United States, this industry employs 400,000 people directly and 2 million indirectly, and our wages are 40% higher than the average U.S. wage. This industry is a poster child for what we want to achieve in improving jobs in America, in addition to improving people’s lives through technology.”

—Heather Thompson

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