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Importing Is Easy. Importing Quality Is Difficult

Written By: 
Marc Blitstein / President & CEO


ADC has been globally sourcing the world’s finest medical device components for over 30 years. When we started there was something of a mystique to importing. It was a big scary world and few understood how to import or had the skills necessary to successfully traverse the globe.

In those 30 years, a lot has changed. China emerged as the world’s manufacturing floor, global commerce accelerated, and barriers came down. The internet has made it relatively easy for armchair importers that never step foot on the source factory floor.

There’s good and bad to these megatrends.

In the plus column, pricing has come down or at the very least price increases have slowed well beyond what they would have been before the advent of easy importing.

A big negative has been America’s loss of millions of manufacturing jobs, particularly in lower tech, labor intensive industries.

Also in the minus column is that the proliferation of cheap product has led to a worrisome drop in quality in a lot of industries, particularly where product has become somewhat commoditized. Healthcare products are an unfortunate casualty.

Most core diagnostic instruments look a lot alike, particularly to the health professional consumer. That has made it easy for companies to import lookalikes that emulate the appearance of recognized brands but nothing more.

Of course, like in every other product category, there are in fact important differences. Differences in the source factories, the importer, and of course, the products themselves. Those differences might not be readily discernible, but are critical to providing a safe, effective medical device and a reliable purchase experience.

At ADC, we start with the very best. ADC partners with the world’s finest subcontractors cultivated over a quarter century on an EXCLUSIVE basis. Our vendor partners are either ISO certified or are held to ISO quality standards.

The facility of one of our overseas partners.

We employ our own Quality Control staff to regularly inspect those facilities and their production. Our in-house quality control operation is unrivaled and we are one of the few firms in this product category certified to BOTH ISO 9001 and the more demanding ISO 13485 standards.

And unlike the vast majority of core diagnostic IMPORTERs, ADC is registered as a manufacturer (not just an importer) with the FDA.

ADC products are designed and built to be the most feature rich and quality constructed with industry leading warranties. And we back all of that with a customer service experience that is second to none.

ADC products are—to coin a phrase—“Overengineered, not Overpriced”

So while importing a cheap scope may be easy, producing a globally sourced, value-priced stethoscope that gets the job done is not.