Healthcare Resource Guide: France




Market Entry

Current Market Trends

Main Competitors

Current Demand

Registration Process


Trade Events

CS Contact

Market Size

Capital: Paris

Population: 67 million
USD 2.488 trillion
Euro (€)
: French


Total market demand in France for medical equipment was estimated at USD 37 billion in 2017, with imports accounting for USD 13.1 billion. Imports from the United States were forecast at USD 4.4 billion, or 33.5 percent of total imports. This percentage is expected to remain approximately the same over the next three years, with overall demand growing at three percent annually.




2017 (estimated)

Total Market Size




Total Local Production




Total Exports




Total Imports




Imports From the U.S.




Exchange Rate:

1 EURO =

1.1095 USD

1.1069 USD

1.0628 USD

France ranks among the top five largest medical device markets in the world. France spends three percent of total health expenditure on medical equipment and supplies and 0.3 percent of GDP, which is average for a Western European country. The overall market is generally well developed, however certain sub-sectors in the more innovative forms of technology still present opportunities for entry. While the public sector is the largest purchaser of diagnostic, therapeutic and surgical equipment, the private sector is also a very dynamic player.

The continuing deficit of the national health insurance funds has prompted new measures to control spending on medical devices, similar to those already in force for pharmaceuticals.

Market Entry

To export medical devices to France, U.S. companies should either have an agent/distributor or set up a subsidiary. Medical devices in the French market, whether imported products or domestically manufactured lines, are subject to the following requirements:

  • Medical devices are required to obtain the CE mark.
  • Medical devices are required to have French-language directions for use included.

Current Market Trends

The medical market is likely to only see moderate growth as it has risen at a very small, steady rate in past years. The medical manufacturing industry has seen entry of foreign companies; larger manufacturers are now subsidiaries of multinational groups.

Domestic production in several sectors the French medical device market is meeting part of the demand, and is supplemented by imports, which now account for around 35 percent of consumption.

Main Competitors

U.S. companies can expect to face competition in this market from major global suppliers such as Siemens, Fresenius, Hitachi, Toshiba, Philips, Smith & Nephew as well as from French players such as Air Liquide, Asklé Santé, Coloplast, Landanger, Mediprema, Moria, Paul Hartmann, Peters Surgical, Proteor, Systam, Thuasne. France is home to many subsidiaries of American companies such as Abbott Vascular, Alcon, BD, Boston Scientific, 3M Santé, Baxter, Edwards Lifesciences, GE Medical, Johnson & Johnson Ethicon, Medtronic, St. Jude Medical and Zimmer.

Current Demand

  • Diagnostic Equipment:

The diagnostic sub-sector represents 34 percent of the total medical equipment market. State-of-the-art diagnostic medical imaging systems are in great demand. Applications for this technology already exist for pediatrics, cardio-vascular care, digestion, urology, and spinal/nerve treatment. As it is well-accepted and effective, the demand for this type of technology will continue to grow. Health care professionals are very optimistic about a feature of medical imagery equipment known as "image networking." This will dramatically improve diagnostics by providing an image data bank that would enable a specialist to compare the image of a current case to hundreds of previous cases.

  • Rehabilitation:

This sub-sector represents 25 percent of the total medical equipment market. It includes all types of disposable medical products. The increasing elderly population reinforces the demand for all kinds of disposable equipment and supplies such as incontinence products and care kits used by nurses and families for home-care.

  • Surgery:

The surgical instrument and supplies sub-sectors represent approximately 18 percent of the total sector. Recent developments in the field of non-invasive surgery could have a strong impact on everyday hospital practices. These latest advances offer superior results and also present a significantly reduced risk to patients.

  • Technical aids:

The French market for medical prosthetics, which accounts for about 7 percent of the total medical equipment market, is characterized by a strong potential for innovative internal prosthetics such as knees, hips, ligaments, and elbows, as well as by a slightly decreasing market for external prosthetics. Technological evolution, especially in the field of anesthesia, offers the potential for rapid changes in this market.

  • Intensive care:

Intensive care equipment sector of medical technology, which includes respiratory monitors, pumps and incubators, represents about 9 percent of the total medical equipment market. Intensive care equipment follows the latest technological advances. Both public and private hospitals show an increasing demand for intensive care equipment and supplies.

  • Hygiene:

The hygiene sub-sector represents approximately 5 percent of the total medical equipment sector. Patient and medical personnel safety is of growing concern to both members of the medical profession and the public. Best sales prospects will certainly focus around assuring stringent personnel safety requirements. This is especially due to the concern regarding AIDS and other contagious diseases. In the future, prevention should receive similar emphasis considering the present focus on protection.

Registration Process

All medical devices sold in France must carry the CE Mark. Registering with the French Ministry of Health is addressed on a case by case basis. In the very best interest of any U.S. exporter, and in the vast majority of cases, this task is handled by the importer/distributor. Indeed, having previous experience with the successful registration of products with the French Ministry of Health will be a critical factor to success in order to facilitate access to end users in France.


The Ministry of Health publishes an annual list of reimbursed products called the Liste des Produits et Prestations (LPP). This list includes items such as implantable medical devices, bandages, wheelchairs, etc.

In 2007, the French Ministry of Health created the Tarification à l’Activité (T2A) system for hospitals. This is a DRG system through which health care providers are reimbursed according to the service they provide to GHM – Groupes Homogènes de Malades (homogeneous group of patients) and GHS – Groupes Homogènes de Séjour (homogeneous group of stay).

In France, payment delay for public healthcare institutions has been set by law to a maximum of 50 days.


There are no significant barriers on healthcare products in France.

Procurement & Tenders

Hospital Procurement Executives have created a professional network: RESAH – Réseau des Acheteurs Hospitaliers –

Tenders for the hospital sector can be found on several web sites, two of which are: and

Trade Events

  • 29-31, 2018
  • / Porte de Versailles

U.S. Commercial Service Contact Information

Name: Alain Levy

Position: Commercial Specialist


Phone: +33 (0) 1 43 12 70 14

Market Size

Healthcare spending (including investment)

$217.8 billion (2015) percent of GDP

11.5 % (2014)

...of which spent on inpatient services (including long-term care)

72.6% (2015)

...of which spent on pharmaceuticals/consumables

25% (2015)

...of which spent on investments


...of which spent on outpatient services

1.9 % (2014)

Hospitals, Procedures, Healthcare Professionals UN:

Number of hospitals -

2,694 (Feb 2012)





Number of hospital beds

410,921 (2014)

available beds per capita (1,000)


of which in general hospitals (2014)


of which in specialized clinics and rehabilitation centers (2014)


Number of surgical procedures

16,306 (2012)

...colonoscopy performed

2,136 times per 100,000 people in the population (2014)

...cataract surgery performed

1,169 times per 100,000 people in the population (2014)


3.23/1,000 people (2014)

...of which surgeons are

58.63/100,000 in 2015

of which internists

...2,437 (2014)

of which pediatricians

...8,007 (2014)


41,740 (2012)




Life expectancy men/women

Male: 78.7 years

Female: 85.1 years

Infant mortality

Total: 3.3/1,000

Percent of population older than 65

(Negative) 19.12%

...projection, 2030


Annual deaths


caused by heart disease

...83,779 (2013)

caused by stroke

...49,082 (2013)

Prevalence of Alzheimer’s Disease

caused 38,834 deaths in 2013 which was double from 1995

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