The increase in spending on healthcare is surging at an alarming rate. The global healthcare spending is estimated to reach over USD 10 trillion by 2022. The management of operational, clinical and financial operations is becoming complex and are difficult to manage. With soaring costs and increasing focus on preventive healthcare and wellness, it is essential to invest in the development of innovative solutions. The integration of healthcare with technology is blurring the divide and improving patient care services, declining cost margins and leading to efficient operational performance. The advent of smart health will help improve quality, increase access, affordability, and lower costs. Digitization will lead to quality patient care and promote personalized healthcare services.
Top Trends Taking the Industry by a Storm
The extensive research in the domain of AI, blockchain, telehealth, etc. is disrupting the market and creating silos for development in the global healthcare industry. Let’s look at some of the trends gaining traction around the world:
Need for value-based care models: The growing demand for transparency around price, quality and safety is driving the integration of data-driven healthcare systems. It is estimated that by the end of 2019, around 15% of global healthcare spending will be associated with some sort of value-based care models. Virtual health/telehealth, sensors, wearables and biometrics will be at the forefront of this revolution.
AI and all its applications : AI is disrupting operations and performance of applications across industries. Healthcare is also now a part of this evolution. AI is emerging as the groundbreaking technology that will offer patient care access in remote corners of the world and enable doctors to offer enhanced treatments with minimal invasion. AI and its applications in drug creation, genome sequencing, patient care and emotional diagnoses are drastically improving the workflow in the industry. AI applications in healthcare IT is projected to value at USD 1.7 billion by 2019.
The rise of digital health : Chronic diseases and systems designed to empower individuals to manage their own health is driving the growth of digital health solutions. RPM devices, mHealth applications, PERS and telehealth platforms are leading the digital transformation in the healthcare industry. According to Forst & Sullivan, digital health tech enabling home healthcare and monitoring is anticipated to grow by 30%, crossing the USD 25 billion by the end of 2019.
Commercial implementations of Blockchain: Healthcare-focused enterprise blockchain is much hyped about in the industry. There are a number of startups that are focused on offering blockchain applications in partial/limited commercial availability. Hashed Health, Change Healthcare, and Guardtime have already expanded their applications in commercial used cases. It is expected that around 5% — 10% healthcare blockchain applications will move from pilot stage to partial or limited commercial stage by the end of 2019.
Asia is the new innovation hub: The drug and medical devices industry across Asia is thriving. The increasing investments in R&D to localize innovations in the emerging regions across Asia is leading to a spectacular growth of the overall market. It is anticipated that the rise in “unicorn startups” will be valued at over USD 1 billion and boost the demand for advanced healthcare services across Asia.
Healthtech Startups in India
India is becoming the epicenter of tech innovations and startups across the world. Tech-equipped medical devices and development of top-notch technology for critical ailments such as, heart diseases, diabetes and cancer are becoming the glory of Indian healthtech startups. Inc42’s 2019 startup watch list included top healthtech companies like Cure.fit, DocsApp, Forus Health, Healthplix, Innovaccer and more. The healthtech startups will help bridge jarring urban and rural gap in the healthcare industry.
T-Hub is focusing on increasing innovations in the healthtech sector and supporting budding startups with pricing and technology. Proving market access to these companies is also on T-Hub’s priority list. With technological disruptions such as AI and IoT, Indian startups can scale-up and lead the healthtech innovation center. NanoHealth, GetPulse, Vihati Techno Health, SDI Care2Sick Solutions, NexRea, eAutomation Cognitive Sciences, Monitra Healthcare, Careerty Informatics, Docturnal Private Limited, Life Circle Health Services, Onward Assist, Ilove 9 Months Fitness Solutions, and IVT India Technologies are some of the healthtech startups incubated at T-Hub.
Challenges in the Healthtech Sector
Personal data security and confidentiality: Data breaches and security is one of the biggest concerns across industries. Patient data leak is one of the most important challenges faced in the healthcare business. The focus on health information privacy will lead to technological innovations. Strong data protection and building advanced security systems is the need of the hour.
A dearth of healthcare mentors: India needs more healthcare mentors and investors. The lack thereof is crippling the growth of these new companies and leading to the failure of many healthtech startups. A holistic remodeling of the ecosystem and right guidance and mentorship could completely change the market landscape.
Lack of proper infrastructure: A severe shortage in the number of doctors across rural hospitals and care centers is shocking. The lack of awareness and reduced spending on healthcare infrastructure development is stifling the progression of the Indian industry.
The development and innovation of new technologies in the healthcare sector are opening new doors for various startups. Bridging the demand gap in rural areas and reducing the cost of healthcare services can be achieved by believing and investing in healthtech startups.
1. “2019 US and Global Health Care Industry Outlook,” Deloitte, 2019
2. “Top 8 Healthcare Predictions for 2019,” Forbes, November 2018
3. “Top 8 Healthcare Predictions for 2019,” Forbes, November 2018
4. “Frost & Sullivan Reveals 2019 Top Growth Opportunities in Healthcare by Region and Key Sectors,” Forst & Sullivan, January 2019
5. “Top 8 Healthcare Predictions for 2019,” Forbes, November 2018
6. “Top 8 Healthcare Predictions for 2019,” Forbes, November 2018
7. “Startup Watchlist: Top Healthtech Startups To Look Out For In 2019,” Inc42, February 2019