The alarmingly rising incidence of cancer around the world, together with limited treatment facilities for the ailment, has impelled physicians to explore treatments beyond the conventional methods. Given the scenario, proton therapy is touted as the most advanced technique available in radiation oncology. Unfortunately, the low number of proton therapy centers is limiting its access to many patients. Hence, hospitals and research institutes around the world have started investing on proton therapy to make it more accessible to patients, thereby boosting the global proton therapy market.
For the first time, the global proton therapy market is expected to become a multibillion-dollar industry by 2019, with almost 330 rooms for proton therapy that will be available for patients. This indicates a significant jump from the 141 proton therapy rooms that were operational worldwide in 2014. However, only a meager percentage of the population that requires radiotherapy will be able to access proton therapy treatment during this time.
Growing Awareness among Medical Professionals Regarding Proton Therapy to Boost Global Market
Over 80,000 cancer patients suffering from either prostate cancer or brain tumors have been successfully treated using proton therapy. The impressive success ratio of the therapy is expected to fuel its demand, as more medical professionals and patients learn about the benefits of the advanced treatment. Based on regional distribution of the global proton therapy market, North America and Europe are the largest markets, since a majority of the centers for proton therapy treatment are located in these regions.
Emerging markets of Asia Pacific are also expected to offer lucrative opportunities to players in the proton therapy market. Opening of new proton therapy centers in Australia due to growing awareness regarding the benefits of the advanced treatment will fuel demand from the Asia Pacific proton therapy market.
Cost Hurdles Will Result in Slow Adoption of Proton Therapy
Despite proton therapy promising a longer life and wellness to cancer patients, the high cost of the therapy is inhibiting many from accessing it. The impact of high cost has cascaded to reimbursements, as insurers refuse to compensate such expensive treatment procedures. Such cost hurdles have led to slow adoption of proton therapy treatment in the past.
However, the emergence of new players in the market, launch of low-cost and compact proton therapy systems, and, most importantly, an increasing amount of clinical evidence exhibiting the efficacy of the procedure is likely to give an incredible boost to the global proton therapy market in the near future.
Market Vendors Building Cheaper and More Compact Proton Therapy Systems
The race now continues between the leading players as well as new entrants in the market to develop cheaper and more compact proton therapy (PT) systems. An increasing number of proton therapy vendors in the market have either developed or are developing more compact PT systems. Among the leading companies, Ion Beam Applications S.A., based in Germany, dominates the global proton therapy market, accounting for almost 55% of the market. Other prominent players in the market include Fermilab Scientists, Varian Medical Systems, and Hitachi.
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