Ambulance stretchers are patient handling devices that are commonly used in emergency situations to safely transport patients in road based ambulances. Most modern ambulance stretchers are handled by at least 2 experienced operators, with the aim of reducing stress and strain for EMS professionals.
In many cases, ambulance stretchers are equipped with a connection to the emergency vehicle deck, which allows for linear movement at the base and rail, which also helps in changes from extended to retracted positions, and back as needed.
The global market for ambulance stretchers is expected to grow at a sluggish CAGR of ~ 2 per cent through the forecast period till 2029. The growth can be attributed to the increasing awareness and adoption of ambulance services, increased spending of healthcare, and the global expansion of the geriatric population.
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Adoption of Ambulance Services in the APAC Region is Key to Growth
Manual ambulance stretchers are some of the more common variants, which hold a larger share of the overall market. In addition, a number of countries have only started to invest heavily in ambulance services in recent times. These include countries in the Asia Pacific region including China, Pakistan, and India. This factor is expected to have a substantial impact on the growth of the industry and revenue.
In addition, some countries like Japan have started to provide emergency ambulance services for free, which increases the demand for ambulances and cot apparatuses. The essential nature of these services to the public has resulted in heavy investments by government and private bodies as well. In addition, the large populations of these countries, also means that the patient pool for ambulances is also larger.
Although most ambulance services around the world are provided through the public sector. However, in recent times the presence of private players in the industry has also gone up. In addition, governments are also annually funding private ambulances, which in turn will help in the increased adoption of pneumatic and electric variants of electric stretchers. These factors are anticipated to sustain the demand for ambulance stretchers in the region for the foreseeable future.
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Prohibitive Costs for Emergency Services Hinder Adoption
Ambulance cot manufacturers are required to comply with extremely strict regulations, which result in very high costs for the equipment. In addition, ambulance services also have factor the cost of employing requisitely skilled personnel and medical equipment. Consequently, the price of an ambulance ride in many part of the world is prohibitive.
These high costs are anticipated to restrict the adoption of ambulance services, and equipment including stretchers. This issue is expected especially impact ambulance services where policies for reimbursement are little to non-existent.
Governments have increasingly pushed to subsidize ambulance services, and are also contributing substantial monetary support to the industry to maintain a strong national health care system. In addition, the increasing presence of air ambulance services can also aid in the growth of the ambulance stretchers market in the near future.
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