3 Themes from the 2022 MedTech Conference

Life Sciences
December 13, 2022

Three core themes from MedTech 2022: Diversity and inclusion in clinical trials, digital transformation, and expanding care into the home.

Three core themes from MedTech 2022: Diversity and inclusion in clinical trials, digital transformation, and expanding care into the home.

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Viz.ai recently had the privilege to exhibit at the 2022 AdvaMed Medtech Conference held in Boston. The cultivation of MedTech ideas, partnerships, and innovations brought with it a record-breaking attendance of more than 3,400 participants across 45 countries. 

Over three content rich days of 100 sessions three core themes started to crystallize, largely driven by the pandemic’s mark on healthcare. Here are the themes we walked away with:

1. Placing Diversity Front and Center

The conference devoted a full day to educating leaders about the evolving issues of diversity and inclusion. MedTech leaders gathered insight from current industry data to better understand what is ahead and how to continue navigating the new ways to work. 

Additionally, discussions focused around how data helps medtech companies identify and include the patients in need of these technologies the most. 

“The MedTech industry is equipped to continue making strides in easing health disparities,” said Ashley McEvoy, executive vice president and worldwide chairman of Johnson & Johnson MedTech. “Data makes it possible to examine the barriers and what interventions to take, whether that’s how people don’t have access to a six-minute [cataract surgery] procedure that can restore sight for life or why maternal health lags in some states.”  

While notable strides have been made to improve access and tackle health disparities, there was general consensus that because this is a multi-faceted issue and much more needs to be done to understand the issues, trial multi-pronged efforts to combat hurdles, assess what efforts work and scale those efforts.

During the session titled “Closing Gaps in Care,” Johnson & Johnson Ethicon’s Chairman, Vladimir Makatsaria, sat with Kathy Steinberg, from The Harris Poll to discuss findings of a survey of 4,000 US adults commissioned under the J & J initiative “My Health Can’t Wait.” Barriers to access included cultural barriers, language barriers, healthcare illiteracy, distance to clinics, wait times to get an appointment, and general inability for many of the working class to even have the time to be seen by a healthcare professional. They concluded from the survey that people want to be proactive about their health, but the infrastructure is not in place to support being proactive. Each barrier needs its own set of solutions. 

With the barriers identified it highlights the need for more partnerships between medtech, health systems and payers to develop solutions. Solving these barriers will require real commitment and creativity. Some solutions put forward included the opportunity for Medtech to invest in language translator-focused startups. As for the cultural barriers. Kathy made an interesting point, “If respondents need providers who understand them - that really starts with the supply chain of medical school talent to have providers who are from these cultures or culturally competent.” As a company focused on increasing access for patients, we look forward to learning more about the solutions that come from this initiative. Viz’s approach to tackling health inequity has been to 1) combat existing bias in certain patient populations with AI trained with representative datasets and 2) employ our broad network of hub-and-spoke hospitals in identifying clinical trial candidates in more diverse communities.

2. Embracing Digital Transformation 

MedTech leaders adamantly voiced that the ongoing acceleration and acceptance of digital transformation in life science industries is expected to drive the evolution of the healthcare ecosystem.

In a key session, “CEOs Unplugged: Improving Care Through Ecosystems,” MedTech executives discussed how physical products, digital technology, and advanced data analytics such as artificial intelligence (AI) link together to support better patient care. With this discussion came thought leadership on the right network of resources and emerging challenges to watch for. 

Now is the time for MedTech stakeholders to leverage these data assets and work with the right network of partners to navigate through the ecosystem complexities. MedTech leaders are looking at making more shifts and investments in data and securing data. They will use data not just to further innovate their medical technologies but also to enhance the care of patients. 

“We are starting to think more expansively about who can bring value to the healthcare industry and what those in data and machine learning can do to enhance healthcare. I’m encouraged by what the future holds for this industry.” said Lisa Earnhardt, Executive Vice President of Medical Devices at Abbott

“One thing about MedTech that shouldn’t change is where you start - at the bedside with the patient…To better support the patient, we know that the healthcare ecosystem needs to evolve to incorporate the proliferation of data in a meaningful way. However, to build a new data science organization and cybersecurity capabilities… new skillsets are required- skillsets that are not common in the traditional MedTech space.” –Geoff Martha, Chairman and CEO of Medtronic 

3. Expanding Care into the Home 

Care delivered in hospitals is getting too expensive and hospitals are also becoming more resource constrained. The industry wants to understand how to bring more access to patients and how to better navigate these transitions. The question remains on how to expand care beyond the 4 walls of health institutions and into the home. Speakers acknowledged that this transition presents a massive opportunity for MedTech and digital health startups to collaborate on solutions for these operational challenges.


These themes come through loud and clear at the Medtech Conference. We plan to use these insights on the future of medtech to guide our upcoming innovations at Viz. The next AdvaMed MedTech Conference is in Anaheim, California from October 9-11, 2023. 

“I hope all who attended went back home, full of new ideas to get back to what they do best: improving and saving the lives of patients around the world,” said Scott Whitaker, president and CEO of AdvaMed.

Want to learn more? Contact us to schedule a demo.