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Keywords of this article:  medical 
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Maria Gallahue-Worl (left) and Judy Melville
Maria Gallahue-Worl (left) and Judy Melville
Solvay Specialty Polymers, a global supplier of high-performance thermoplastics, has expanded its focus on the healthcare industry with the creation of a dual-pronged management team for implantable and non-implantable medical devices. In addition to the new management structure, Solvay Specialty Polymers announced a 50% increase in staffing for sales, marketing, and technology functions in the US and Europe. Plans for further expansion in Asia-Pacific are also underway.

"Today we announce that Solvay is building on its 20-year history as a key material supplier in the healthcare field and devoting considerable new resources to help customers be more efficient and cut costs," said Laird McBeth, Head of Commercial Operations for Solvay Specialty Polymers.

Maria Gallahue-Worl has been appointed to the position of Global Business Development Manager for Healthcare Plastics offered for use in non-implantable devices; Judy Melville has been appointed to the post of Global Business Development Manager for Solviva Biomaterials offered for use in implantable devices.

"The size of the opportunities for our business in healthcare materials warrants two strong and focused leaders," said Mr McBeth. "While Judy and Maria will lead different components of our business, they will collaborate with one another to bring a breadth of products and capabilities that are unmatched in the industry."

In her new role, Ms Gallahue-Worl will oversee Solvay's healthcare business that includes medical grade plastics for instrumentation, reusable and single-use devices, medical equipment, and sterilization cases and trays. The extensive product line includes Radel polyphenylsulfone (PPSU), Udel polysulfone (PSU), Ixef polyarylamide (PARA), AvaSpire polyaryletherketone (PAEK), and KetaSpire polyetheretherketone (PEEK) resins.

Ms Melville will direct Solvay's rapidly growing business in polymers offered for use in implantable medical devices. The line of Solviva Biomaterials includes Zeniva PEEK, which boasts a modulus very close to that of bone plus excellent biocompatibility, toughness, and fatigue resistance; Proniva self-reinforced polyphenylene (SRP), one of the world's stiffest and strongest unreinforced thermoplastic that offers exceptional hardness and biocompatibility; Eviva polysulfone (PSU), which offers practical toughness in a strong, transparent polymer; and Veriva polyphenylsulfone (PPSU), which provides unsurpassed toughness combined with transparency and excellent biocompatibility.

According to the company, another important element in Solvay's healthcare strategy is the recent formation of Solvay Specialty Polymers, which is comprised of the activities of Solvay Advanced Polymers, Solvay Solexis, and Solvay Padanaplast companies along with the SolVin PVDC product line.
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