Report: Wheelchair Prices Rise Despite Volatile Economy
- By Cindy Horbrook
- Jan 24, 2014
A new report from IBISWorld says that despite a volatile economy over the past three years, wheelchair prices have continued to increase as a result of the expanding population of people aged 65 and older and increased health spending.
“Wheelchairs are mostly used by older adults, and with the rising number of people aged 65 and older, the demand for medical devices such as wheelchairs has increased,” said IBISWorld analyst Jordan Weinstein in a news announcement. “In addition, private and public healthcare spending is growing, further boosting demand for wheelchairs.”
The rising material costs have also negatively affected suppliers, such as the price of plastic and rubber, in recent years. These volatile shifts in input prices are expected to be less drastic than in the past three years as input costs are expected to rise at a much slower rate.
For buyers, the increases in input material costs are mostly absorbed by suppliers' profit margins in an attempt to remain competitive in the wheelchairs market. “Profit margins vary between suppliers, which allow buyers to shop around for a vendor that will meet their requirements of both product and price,” added Weinstein.
According to the report, wheelchairs have a buyer power score of 4.0 out of 5. This high score reflects a buyer's ability to negotiate lower prices due in part to the high number of suppliers. However, recent price trends have slightly weakened buyer power.
Cindy Horbrook is the associate editor for HME Business, Mobility Management, and Respiratory & Sleep Management magazines.