From Surgical Scrubs to Dental Caulk, Med Tech Jobs Driving Economy

The medical technology industry is a vibrant and growing part of the economy, with each industry job helping to generate an additional 4.5 jobs across the nation.

These findings, from health research company The Lewin Group, note that medical technology is a source of high-paying jobs that employed 357,700 workers, paid $21.5 billion in salaries, and shipped $123 billion worth of products in 2006.

In particular, the study states “policymakers at the federal, state, and local levels need to understand that innovation is not only driving advances in patient health, but in the health and strength of the national, state, and local economies.”

The study finds medical technology jobs pay more than 50% above the average job in Arizona, Arkansas, Mississippi, and Wisconsin. Annual pay for medical technology employees exceeded $50,000 in Georgia, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Jersey, and Washington. And 17 states paid more than $40,000, while only six states paid industry employees less than $34,000.

In a “median” state, the report shows that each dollar paid as payroll for a medical technology employee generates an additional $1.12 in payroll in that state, while each dollar of medical technology sales generates another $0.90 in sales in that state.

Large states have the highest employment in the medical technology sector, the report says. In 2006, California had the largest number of medical technology jobs with 72,500 workers, followed by Massachusetts (21,847), Florida (19,949), Minnesota (18,571), New Jersey (17,953), and Pennsylvania (17,482).

Delaware Bursting with Medical Tech Jobs

For a small state, the report finds Delaware has more than 2.5 times more medical technology workers than expected, and this high concentration is helping to drive the state’s economy.

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The Lewin Group study says Delaware has over 3,000 people working in medical technology at an average annual salary of $64,102, well over the state average of $46,285.

The medical device employers, according to the research, had a total payroll of more than $196.6 million and sold more than $1.2 billion worth of products in the previous year. In addition, the survey says for every medical tech job in the state, more than 3.5 additional jobs were created.

Medical technology companies with ties to the mid-Atlantic region include DuPont, Dade Behring Holdings, and Dentsply International, among others.

Overall, Delaware ranked 28th among the 50 states in medical technology employment.

But in terms of the highest concentration of medical technology workers, the top five states are Utah, Delaware, Minnesota, Massachusetts, and Indiana.

Elaine Rigoli has nearly 15 years of experience managing content and community for various B2B and consumer websites. Elaine has written thousands of business and technology articles and has been quoted in The Wall Street Journal and eWeek, among other publications.

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