MedTech compliance goes mainstream

  • Posted on 09.05.2019

MedTech compliance goes mainstream


Nancy Travis

Vice President at AdvaMed


By combining the GMTCC with the annual European MedTech Forum, the medtech industry is signalling that compliance is moving centre-stage, writes Nancy Travis, Vice President, International Compliance & Governance, AdvaMed

For more than a decade, MedTech Europe and AdvaMed have jointly organised the key event on compliance professionals’ calendars. The Global MedTech Compliance Conference (GMTCC) is an annual gathering of the international healthcare compliance community. Over the years, it has grown into a forum where to share ideas, discuss challenges and promote best practices.

Some people say compliance is a lonely profession, as the compliance department often-times is a department of one in smaller companies or for local offices in new markets. But compliance officers attending this conference will find a peer group ready to engage, an experience that can be enormously valuable and rewarding – and create a network that will live on after the event concludes.

I’m particularly excited about this year’s GMTCC because it’s a little different from previous years.  The 2019 conference will be held in parallel with the European MedTech Forum (May 14-16) – an event that has traditionally focused on business operations – for the first time. This shows that ethics is no longer a side-line to the business; it’s not a nice-to-have. Ethics and compliance are mainstream features of good business practice.  More than that, compliance is a business enabler.

As a relative newcomer to the field, I have been struck by the rapid transition of compliance from the periphery to an industry priority. As Bronwen Taylor said when closing last year’s GMTCC, compliance departments have moved from being perceived the ‘Department of No’ to become the ‘Department of ‘How’.

In tandem with this shift, I’ve seen a strong appreciation from the business side for following ethical business practices. In many leading medtech organisations, business and compliance are now a true partnership.

To continue global progress in this area, the GMTCC is also hosting the first meeting of the Global Compliance Network on May 14th. This network will play an important role in implementing the global principles on ethical business practices agreed last year by the Global Medical Technology Alliance (GMTA). It will be exciting to hear how the global industry is professing towards the goal of harmonisation set out in the GMTA statement, which was a highlight of 2018. And, as we look to 2020 and beyond, we will have the opportunity to profile the next decade of medtech compliance.

I am also looking forward to the CEO panel discussions. In compliance, the tone from the top is a key driver of organizational behavior. The fact that all CEO panels will jointly address the GMTCC and MedTech Forum demonstrates that compliance now has a seat at the top table.

By bringing together business leaders, compliance professionals and other healthcare stakeholders, we foster a more open dialogue about our shared challenges and work together to chart a course for the future.  

This blog is part of the MedTech Forum blog series. Nancy Travis will be speaking at the MedTech Forum and Global MedTech Compliance Conference 2019. You can follow the conversation under #MTF2019 and find more details at

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