New product development is common in those industries that seek the benefits of newer electronics that continually increase their capabilities in smaller form factors. Each successive computer, game system, or mobile device boasts more speed, power, and functionality than its predecessor. And while all of these devices have their own important roles in life to fulfill, the medical industry has perhaps the most critical need for new and advanced electronic technologies.
Modern medical technology encompasses much more than the defibrillator shown on a popular TV show. Advanced electronics are used in research and development, diagnostic equipment, surgical tools, rehabilitation, other patient care systems, and forensic science. Medical providers need the best equipment available and constantly run into circumstances that require new tools and systems. One recent example is the global pandemic, which spurred the development of new electronic diagnostic and treatment systems virtually overnight. Let’s look at some of this medical technology and what it takes to get these advanced electronics manufactured.
The Need for Continually Improving Technology in Today’s Health Care
The number of advanced electronics used for medical tools and systems worldwide is vast, and the need for these new technologies is growing at a fantastic rate. The COVID-19 pandemic demonstrated the value of developing new and cutting-edge health care equipment rapidly. New detection devices and all of their accompanying hardware and support systems had to be designed and manufactured quickly. But that is only one example of the medical equipment that is being developed and manufactured on a daily basis. Many other systems are being produced regularly to assist medical professionals with surgeries, patient care, and many other applications.
Some of this equipment being produced includes various other types of medical diagnostic systems. Devices like these are available in both portable units so that health care providers can evaluate patients while on the scene, and more permanent systems that provide real-time results during surgical procedures. Whether for diagnostics, surgical tools, or other systems, the need for medical equipment is growing, as is the need for expertise in manufacturing this equipment.
PCB Manufacturing for the Cutting Edge Technology in Healthcare
To create the printed circuit board assemblies needed for new medical technology development, local contract PCB manufacturers need to be specialized in the following:
To best do the job, local PCB contract manufacturers need to be highly adaptable to respond to the needs of the medical equipment market. This response includes the ability to change an existing design to repurpose it for changing specifications or adapt it to new market targets. Next, let’s take a look at some specific ways a local PCB contract manufacturer like VSE has been able to help in building medical equipment.
How a Local PCB CM Like VSE can Help
VSE is a mid-volume, high-mix PCB contract manufacturer located in Silicon Valley. They specialize in building electronics for many industries, including the medical market. Here are four of their success stories to show how a local CM like VSE can help with manufacturing cutting-edge medical technology:
| 1. Radiological technology: VSE was able to help this customer’s box build with the following:
By communicating these issues back to the customer, VSE could help uncover potential problems that would have affected the operation and performance of the finished system. Although VSE completed the initial builds on time with workarounds, their engineering commitment to this customer allowed the customer to make the corrections needed for future builds.
|2. Radiotherapy technology: VSE was able to help this customer by examining the initial unit provided to them and identifying and reconciling hundreds of documentation discrepancies to create a new documentation package for manufacturing. From there, they could improve the product’s overall manufacturability to increase quality and reduce production time. These improvements included engineering new wiring harnesses that were easier to install, test, and inspect, which helped the unit’s overall look and operation.
|3. COVID-19 Testing: This customer developed testing and analysis equipment and was on the front lines of the fight against the global pandemic. Their assembly needs doubled overnight while most manufacturers were reducing their output, and VSE was able to help by engineering and creating custom manufacturing fixtures. Not only did this increase the assembly throughput by a considerable percentage, but it also increased the reliability and quality of the intricate assembly process.
|4. COVID-19 Antibody Testing: One of the tools developed in the fight against the global pandemic was testing for COVID-19 antibodies. This testing helps relieve pressure on the healthcare system and reduce the social and economic impacts of the virus by identifying those who have COVID-19 antibodies from prior infection (asymptomatic or symptomatic). VSE partnered with a manufacturer specializing in products that automate complex biomedical testing processes to build antibody analysis equipment.
In all of these cases, VSE was able to help the customers improve their quality while decreasing their production time to get this medical technology built and ready for use.
If you are looking for a CM that prides itself on its experience and capabilities to ensure that each medical equipment assembly is built to the highest standards, look no further than VSE. Contact us today to learn more about partnering with us for your next project.