Mechanical medical devices are almost magical, for the people whose lives they save at least. 

Medtronic is the largest manufacturer of medical devices in the world. Its profits and sales mostly come from the American healthcare market, but the company keeps its headquarters in Ireland for reasons associated with taxes. The company was part of the largest tax inversion in the history of the United States when it moved its operations to Ireland through its acquisition of Covidien. That company was registered in Ireland, allowing Medtronic to move from the United States. 

The company has operations in more than one hundred and forty countries across the globe. It has more than eighty thousand employees. 

Animal Concerns

From 2005 to 2010, Medtronic had extensive controversies surrounding its treatment of animals. The company was targeted by the animal rights group PETA. Three times, PETA made allegations and attempted to submit resolutions to the shareholders at Metronic. These happened in 2005, 2008, and 2010. 

The organization said that the experiments that Medtronic conducted on animals were overly cruel. There were five specific tests that PETA said were problematic. PETA accused Medtronic of taking advantage of lax laws surrounding animal welfare in countries like China. 

Medtronic refused to change its animal testing practices, and PETA eventually moved on. 

Innovative Treatments

The company has been a pioneer in many areas of healthcare. 

These include neuromodulation, in which Medtronic has created devices that make a huge difference in people’s lives. These devices are major supports for people who suffer from chronic pain, urologic disorders, and gastrointestinal issues. More than ten percent of sales for Medtronic come from their neuromodulation division. That’s almost two billion dollars per year. 

Another major section of the company’s business is in cardiology. The company makes technology for vascular surgery, cardiac surgery, and interventional cardiology. It also has major devices for cardiac rhythm management. It’s a major manufacturer of pacemakers. 

The second largest business for Medtronic is its spinal business. This includes musculoskeletal therapies, of which Medtronic is a pioneer. The company makes spinal implants that are essential for kyphoplasty. This is one place that Medtronic has run into serious controversy. The company settled with the United States government after it was discovered that Medtronic committed fraud against Medicare surrounding its promotion of its kyphoplasty products.   

Mergers and Acquisitions

Medtronic has had a long history of mergers and acquisitions. The company has been part of dozens of major business connections that have helped it to expand its business. 

The company has been divided into four units in order to make sense of its broad spectrum of companies. Its four business sections include:

  • The Diabetes Group
  • The Cardiac and Vascular Group
  • The Restorative Therapies Group
  • The Minimally Invasive Therapies Group

Everything that Medtronic does is divided into these four sections. The company manufactures, researches, and develops therapies and devices for more than two dozen chronic diseases. Among these are urinary incontinence, chronic pain, spinal disorders, obesity, Parkinson’s disease, heart failure, and diabetes. 

With continued innovation, and with the prospect of future technology, Medtronic continues to be one of the most promising and exciting medical companies in the world.