KResearch projects that the value of medical equipment and assistive devices for the elderly in Thailand will amount to a range of THB8-9 billion in 2021, and register an compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7.8 percent over the next five years as Thailand is approaching an aged society status. The majority of the market share is still dominated by the Business-to-Business (B2B) sector, especially demand from non-hospital businesses including elderly care centers, nursing homes and retirement homes. Moreover, as the COVID-19 situation has forced some elderly patients to convalesce at home, demand for medical equipment and assistive devices has risen among senior citizens who are still able to afford their own devices during this period.
The elderly assistive devices market that should benefit from higher demand can be divided into two main categories, namely 1) medical equipment for preliminary care and protection such as blood pressure monitors, blood glucose meters, pulse oximeters and aspirators; and 2) assistive devices for users' convenience and security, for instance, hospital beds, wheelchairs, standing assist rails, non-slip flooring, ramps, wheelchair lifts, IoT-based emergency response systems and fall detection sensors.
Going forward, KResearch views that assistive devices for users' convenience and security like wheelchairs, electric hospital beds, sensors and medical alert buttons will likely see considerable growth, as there is growing demand for these products from both businesses and seniors with sufficient spending power for greater convenience in their everyday life.
However, Thailand's production for both product categories are likely insufficient for domestic demand. Moreover, most of these assistive devices are basic equipment which utilizes simple technologies. As a result, importers and distributors of imported products should benefit from increased demand during this initial period. That said, Thai manufacturers will need to elevate their production standards to make equipment that is more technologically advanced, to meet the demand of elderly consumers and swiftly expand their market share. Products that tend to have manufacturing potential in Thailand include electric hospital beds and motorized wheelchairs. Ultimately, purchase decisions will be influenced by improved product standards, affordability and effective marketing.