From demographics to disinfectants, PolyOne keeps finger on pulse of medtech customer needs


A global supplier of specialized polymer materials to a swathe of sectors, PolyOne (Avon Lake, OH) will have an expansive and multifaceted presence at NPE2015. The company notably will showcase technologies that help its customers and their products stand out from the competition in its meeting center and through several technical presentations. More on that in a minute. PlasticsToday spoke with Charles Kutchin, Global Industry Director for Healthcare, to get a sense of how the company approaches customers in the medical device industry, one of the many sectors it serves. As with any successful venture, it all begins with an understanding of customer needs and harnessing the capabilities to fulfill them.

Sad but true: we're not getting any younger. Nor is the population in general, and that is having a profound impact on medical product design. "Ergonomics is not a new trend, certainly, but it continues to be a high priority in our collaboration with customers," says Kutchin. Materials have a significant role to play. "Nonslip surfaces and easy-to-grip materials such as thermoplastic elastomers are important for surgical instruments but also for remote and point-of-care devices," he says.

Ergonomics is also a concern in healthcare packaging, Kutchin adds, and that is an area where PolyOne has expended a great deal of effort, especially since the 2013 acquisition of Spartech, a producer of custom plastic sheet and roll stock and packaging technologies. PolyOne has added new capabilities in healthcare packaging as a result in its Designed Services and Solutions business.

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