The Medtech sector is growing with an additional 4,000 jobs likely to be created in Ireland by 2020, according to a new report by the Irish Medtech Association Skillnet and Irish Medtech Association. Notably, nearly a third of these new jobs are to be in specialised areas of R&D and engineering, highlighting the importance of getting the right skills to maintain the Irish medtech's reputation for leading industry innovation in Europe.
The report finds that there is a need for investment in skills in order for Ireland to maintain its strong position and to reap the benefits from advances in manufacturing technology. The Irish Medtech Association Skillnet is ideally placed to support this agenda. The network is aligned with the National Skills Strategy 2025, and has developed numerous industry specific programmes including a MSc in Regulatory Affairs, Fundamentals in Regulatory Affairs, Operational Excellence Benchmarking Model MÓR, Operational Excellence Through Lean leadership and Design for Medical Technologies programme. In 2017 the Skillnet is looking at developing a programme in Additive Manufacturing (3D Printing) for Medical Technologies.
Irish Medtech Association Skillnet Manager Pauline O' Flanagan said: "Since 2008 our Skillnet has trained more than 7,500 people with industry led programmes to address skills gaps. We have also successfully retrained many unemployed people to equip them to start new careers in medtech. But more needs to be done to encourage students at primary and secondary level to pursue medtech careers. While engineering and technology courses have been popular in recent years, the CAO recently announced a 5% drop in these courses. This highlights the importance of improving awareness about opportunities in high tech sectors like medtech."
Irish Medtech Association Director Sinead Keogh said: "Ireland has one of the highest levels of third level graduates across the EU, and this has been a central pillar of Ireland's winning formula for growth. This has been underscored by job creation and investment by the medtech sector, with more than 2,000 jobs added in the past couple of years and €100 million in investment publicly announced in 2016. Manufacturing is Ireland's second largest industry, employing more than 220,000 people and medtech is a key pillar with the potential to expand further in the right conditions.”
For more information see www.irishmedtechskillnet.ie
Pictured at the launch of the 'Future skills needs analysis for the medical technology sector in Ireland to 2020', are Pauline O' Flanagan, Irish Medtech Association Skillnet, Paul Healy, Skillnets, and Sinead Keogh, Irish Medtech Association.