Made in the USA and Innovation

As we continue to see increasing issues with supply chains – just keeping products as basic as toilet paper or cat food on our shelves – the importance of “Made in the USA” is driven home every day. The struggles with the global supply chain ecosystem have heightened our awareness of the importance of buying products Made in the USA. But why does it matter? Why should a consumer care where their product is manufactured?

Manufacturing is an essential part of the American economy. American manufacturing is woven into our national fiber and impacts not only our economy, but our independence and national security, and the well-being of every American. Presidents and legislatures alike have enacted orders and laws intended to strengthen domestic manufacturing and encourage governments (and citizens) to buy more products made in the United States.

In today’s global economy, consumers can look past their neighbors, look beyond their borders, and buy products from around the world. This is a good thing. A great thing. Competition can make products even better. But if given equal or better choices, shouldn’t a consumer look to buy American first?

It’s important to “buy local” when it makes sense. Buying American creates and supports manufacturing jobs in the US. These manufacturing jobs create and support other jobs in the US economy. In their paper “The Multiplier Effect,” Keith Nosbusch and John Bernaden of Rockwell Automation argued that there is a multiplier with manufacturing jobs – for every 100 manufacturing jobs, there are another 58 jobs indirectly created through suppliers. They stated that manufacturing creates a ripple effect that can improve the economic vitality of a country. According to the Manufacturers Alliance for Productivity and Innovation Foundation (MAPI), for every full-time job in manufacturing, there are 3.4 full-time equivalent jobs created in non-manufacturing industries. The data proves that buying American creates jobs for Americans and improves the US economy. US-based manufacturing fosters improved economic stability.

US-based manufacturing is also more flexible to changes in the market or in consumer demands or needs and can deliver products faster to the market – both in terms of development and delivery. Just look at the many issues we’ve recently seen in global shipping and the supply chain issues that has caused.

Relying on foreign manufacturers also puts consumers and our economy at the mercy of forces beyond our control. If a foreign government – or even our own – decides manufacturers cannot export to the US, what happens then to the US companies and consumers that rely on those foreign manufacturers?

Buying American is not a cry to reduce or restrict competition. In 1985, President Ronald Reagan said that “Historically, competition constantly creates pressure for innovation, product improvement, and customer satisfaction…In an increasingly competitive world, we Americans must redouble our efforts to make products of the highest quality…” This is not an attempt to hide from competition, but rather a declaration to embrace it.

Competition forces innovation. Manufacturers must be innovative to be competitive. Technology is a path forward for many US manufacturers. This has long been the case – both in the past and for the future. The US is a technology leader – at the forefront of innovation and technical development.

This is certainly the case for Omega. Not only is Omega the only US manufacturer of interventional systems, the company is also the only manufacturer – US or global – that provides AI/ROI image-guided systems that dramatically reduce radiation exposure.

Omega is the first, and presently only, company in the world to develop and manufacture this leading-edge technology – technology that is proven to reduce radiation exposure to patients and staff beyond what is possible with conventional non-AI systems. Omega is disrupting the status quo in image-guided solutions.

Innovation was a path forward for Omega and can be for other US manufacturers. Embrace global competition, meet it head on, and challenge it with superior technology. Create a new standard, one that obsoletes the competition.

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