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Lincoln Graham-Lee

Recent Posts by Lincoln Graham-Lee

3D Printing: A New Frontier for Healthcare Innovation

Amos Dudley, a 24 year old digital design student who could not afford the cost of braces from an orthodontist, used a 3D printer to create his own – for a fraction of the cost. This case demonstrates that 3D printing can fundamentally change the manufacturing relationship between companies and consumers. This is not the first we have heard of innovation in the healthcare industry with 3D printers. The latest technologies are using bioprinters to print body parts like ears, muscles, and bones, or are looking into new methods of high-dose medication delivery using powder-liquid three-dimensional printing technology. But in these cases, innovation is led by large healthcare companies, not patients, which makes this story of Amos Dudley so interesting. 3D printing has democratized the manufacturing process, putting the power in consumers’ hands and on their desktops. What does this mean for the healthcare industry? And how will it respond? In the current climate, the cost of healthcare is a major issue, therefore the conditions are ripe for innovators (“makers” in 3D terms) out there to find cheaper solutions. Another example of this was the case of two makers who teamed up to develop a 3D printed prosthetic hand forContinue Reading