Shipping Requirements for Dental Supplies and Tools

The global market for dental equipment and supplies offers an enormous opportunity for the U. S., with manufacturers and policy makers needing to work together to eliminate or reduce barriers to market access. Export activity to the largest and most mature global dental markets is likely to continue, while Southeast Asia and Latin America are emerging as promising regions for U. S.

manufacturers. Dental equipment and supplies, included under code 339114 of the North American Industrial Classification System (NAICS), consist of equipment, instruments and supplies used by dentists, dental hygienists, and laboratories. Western European countries that manufacture dental equipment and supplies, as well as Japan and Canada, are extremely large and lucrative export markets for the U. S. These stable and mature markets have relatively low annual growth rates of three to five percent.

Therefore, to facilitate market expansion, medical device companies recognize that they must also focus on developing markets, such as China and Korea, to grow in the future. Significant, yet underserved, populations in developing markets are increasingly aware of the development of health and oral care technology. In addition, many developing markets have highly urbanized population centers with increasing fungible wealth, which makes certain subsectors of the market attractive to exporters. Discretionary patient spending is also on the rise in international markets, making exports more attractive to the U. Because many dental procedures are elective, insurance isn't usually a factor. Manufacturers of dental equipment and supplies will make it easier and faster for customers to place orders and receive products.

A growing majority of dentists expect to receive their orders within a week. Most expect delivery in two days or less. Manufacturers will work even harder to improve the value they offer to dental professionals, and customer service will be reflected in the speed of delivery and customs clearance. Precision dentistry is an increasingly important subsector within oral health. In general terms, the essence of precision dentistry is to adapt treatment to the specific needs of the patient based on an individual's genetic biomarkers.

By minimizing diagnostic errors, improving outcomes and reducing side effects, precision dentistry is poised to transform the way doctors approach health care. The Convention contains certain stipulations for dental amalgam, a widely used material that contains 50 percent mercury and is used for dental fillings. The unique feature of dental amalgam treatment in the Convention is that it is subject to gradual use, and not to complete elimination, since there are no alternatives to dental amalgam available everywhere. As the dental industry and practice move from a more traditional model of amalgam-based restorative dentistry to a paradigm that includes prevention and general health around the world, the gradual reduction of dental amalgam may become a turning point in an era in which oral health is prioritized over general well-being. The dental equipment and supplies industry generates higher-than-average salaries and is expected to continue to grow. Manufacturers can find new opportunities to export dental equipment and supplies if they take into account regulatory issues such as those set out by the MDR (Medical Device Regulation) as well as customer service expectations.

Marvin Palmateer
Marvin Palmateer

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