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General Card #1833
Is there a global market for blood glucose monitors?
Updated: 1/28/2022 10:46 AM by Mike Rust
Reviewed: 10/17/2022 8:12 AM by Becky Benishek
Students explore global markets for medical devices
Biomedical engineering (BME) is a difficult field of study since students must develop both technical skills in engineering as well as a solid understanding of human physiology. This has typically been addressed by the inclusion of stand-alone courses in anatomy and physiology, which attempt to provide students the background knowledge to be successful in the medical field. However, the large volume of anatomical structures and physiological principles covered in these courses can make them quite challenging for students, especially considering how different this type of content is from other engineering courses (e.g., instrumentation, materials science, etc.). Moreover, many students struggle in these medically-based courses to make connections between the underlying physiology and their work as engineers. Thus, modules are sought that connect the physiology course content to the either new or existing medical technologies.

In this module (developed for a junior-level physiology course) students are presented a scenario involving a company that is considering taking an existing medical device (e.g., blood glucometer) into new markets. The central question of the assignment is whether there is a global market for this product, or if it is only suitable for use in the United States. Students are assigned a particular region/country of the world to explore (e.g., Europe, South America, Asia, etc.), including metrics to investigate such as clinical relevance, economics, and technical feasibility. Ultimately, the students provide a recommendation as to whether there is a market opportunity to exploit, or if the device should remain in the U.S. marketplace. The students also learn about the underlying physiology behind the disease condition, which was typically covered on its own in this course.
  • Demonstrate constant curiosity about our changing world
  • Integrate information from many sources to gain insight
  • Assess and manage risk
Creating Value
  • Identify unexpected opportunities to create extraordinary value
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