Northeast Indiana's Medical Device Industry

Northeast Indiana medical device companies are market share leaders in the $37 billion orthopedic and biologics industry.

  • Medical device companies in Northeast Indiana control 34% of the worldwide orthopedic market, translating into $12 billion in revenues.
  • Combined together, companies in the Fort Wayne region control 60% of the $6.6 billion worldwide hip replacement market and 64% of the $6.7 billion worldwide knee replacement market.
  • Orthopedic companies with spinal implants divisions hold over 20% market share in the $7.3 billion spine surgery market, and this share could increase on the heels of the recent $21 billion JNJ-Synthes merger.
  • Fort Wayne Metals is a market leader in the production of fine grade medical wire. The company creates products for the orthopedic, vascular therapy, cardiac rhythm management, endoscopy, and orthodontic markets. Products are developed from biocompatible metals such as nitinol, titanium, and other high performance alloys.

The medical device industry in Northeast Indiana is comprised of firms throughout the value chain, providing logistical advantages and cost savings for larger OEMs. Medical device sterilization, precision machining, molding, contract manufacturing, and testing are all performed in the region.

  • Iotron Industries recently invested $15 million in Northeast Indiana and owns the technology for IMPELA® Electron Beam sterilization, which is an innovative and environmentally safe method of sterilizing medical devices.
  • C&A Tool competes in multiple markets based on its in-house machining and engineering capabilities. These include turning, milling, CNC machining, grinding, and metal laser sintering.
  • Greatbatch Medical, which pioneered the first implantable pacemaker, specializes in a complex medical market including implant grade batteries, vascular access systems, precision metal forming, micromolding, orthopedic implants and delivery systems. 
  • Nemcomed, an orthopedic contract manufacturer focusing on R&D / prototyping and product development, recently announced its second expansion in 5 years.

Fort Wayne-area firms produce a diversified product set spreading across various medical device markets.

Companies in the region supply or create products for the following markets:

  • Orthopedic Implants
  • Surgical Instrumentation
  • Implant Cases
  • Orthotics
  • Cardiovascular
  • Endoscopy
  • Implant Sterilization
  • Medical Grade Wire
  • Orthodontics
  • Injection Molding and Precision Plastics

Northeast Indiana is focused on developing a pipeline of talent for the medical device industry through higher education.

  • Purdue University is a nationally recognized leader in engineering. Undergraduate programs are offered in Biomechanical Engineering and graduate programs are offered focusing on musculoskeletal tissues, orthopedic implants, and musculoskeletal biomaterials.
  • Ivy Tech College recently opened a 20,000 square foot Orthopedic and Advanced Manufacturing Training Center focused on precision CNC machining.
  • Trine University offers a graduate program in biomedical engineering.
  • Grace College has launched the nation’s first graduate program in orthopedic regulatory and clinical affairs.
  • Other leading institutions in the state offering biomechanical and medical device related programs include the Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology, which offers an applied biology and engineering program and the University of Notre Dame, which offers a graduate program in orthopedic biomechanics and biomaterials.
  • Northeast Indiana currently boasts six STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math)-focused New Tech high schools.

Employment & Wages
Occupation 2015 NEI Employment 2014 Avg. Hourly Wage 2014 National Avg. Hourly Earnings NEI/US
Welders, cutters, solderers, and brazers 2,259 $17.05 $19.25 88.6%
Computer-controlled machine tool operators, metal and plastic 1,618 $15.67 $18.23 86.0%
Industrial engineers 1,187 $32.44 $40.92 79.3%
Mechanical engineers 997 $32.77 $41.89 78.2%
Tool and die makers 929 $21.64 $24.08 89.9%
Computer support specialists 776 $19.90 $26.43 75.3%
Grinding, lapping, polishing, and buffing machine tool setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic 736 $15.38 $16.42 93.7%
Computer programmers 437 $31.62 $39.75 79.6%
Architectural and Engineering managers 380 $51.85 $66.69 77.8%
Welding, soldering, and brazing machine setters, operators, and tenders 354 $16.86 $17.53 96.2%
Lathe and turning machine tool setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic 318 $17.94 $17.96 99.9%
Software developers, systems software 221 $45.58 $50.98 89.4%
Metal-refining furnace operators and tenders 184 $16.92 $19.83 85.3%

Source: EMSI 2015.2 Class of Worker, QCEW

Major Employers
Company Product Employment in FTE
C & A Tool Engineering Inc. Tool and Die 592
Fort Wayne Metals Research Products Corp. Wire 528
Micropulse Medical Devices for Cardiovascular and Orthopedic Applications 250
Pyromation Temperature Sensors 186
Nemcomed Implants and R&D 128
Metal Spinners Inc. Metal Spinning 124
Greatbatch Medical Orthopedic Supplies 120
DeKalb Molded Plastics Medical Housings 118
Quadrant Polymer Plastics and Thermaformed Composites 107
Vita Nonwovens Nonwoven Fiber 73
L.H. Medical Implants and Instruments 65
BKB Manufacturing Tools for Cutting Chrome, Titanium, and Steel 55

Source: Community Research Institute at IPFW

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