Critical elements in the design, development and use of medical devices. A systemic perspective of orthopedic devices landscape in low- and middle-income countries
In this paper Saidi and Douglas review the critical elements in the design and development of medical devices in general, and orthopedic devices in particular. Furthermore, they illustrate, by means of examples, the initiatives that have been put in place to incorporate contextual factors in low resource settings.
The paper reviews the factors that influence the development of medical devices in general and orthopedic devices in particular. Focusing on low- and middle- income countries which tend to rely on medical devices and donations, the study advocates for the need to address context-oriented challenges that interfere with usability and compatibility, such as lack of electricity to operate the technologies and spare parts for maintenance. To minimize these problems, it is imperative to consider the prevailing conditions of developing countries in their broad context in order to customize the medical devices and enhance their usability. This study illustrates by means of examples the initiatives that can be adopted to facilitate collaboration between developing and developed countries for their mutual benefit. The study is useful to policy makers, local and international producers of medical devices and other stakeholders as it illuminates the importance of context in the production of medical devices.
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