A lot’s been said about the impact of the Covid-19 crisis on digital healthcare. Formerly niche services have become critical societal infrastructure. Rapid innovation and adoption that would normally take years, took place over a matter of weeks, accelerating a trend that was already underway. But the market opportunity, relative to the startups chasing it, is still huge. We’ve yet to see the biggest winners.
Our recent Marketplaces report in partnership with Adevinta, supported by Point Nine Capital and Speedinvest, explores how pressures from ageing populations, spiralling costs and staff shortages have long been drivers towards the digitization of healthcare.
Download the full Online Marketplaces report
Digital consumer healthcare demand has skyrocketed
Healthcare is among the least digitized consumer categories. Unsurprisingly, digital healthcare recently experienced rapid mainstream adoption, reflected in public Health tech share prices.
Telehealth has been an early winner, going from a niche sector to a massive category. Polish healthtech company DocPlanner closed €80M Series E in May, and CEO Mariusz Gralewski told us about the scale of behavioural change they’ve seen.
“We launched a video consultation feature in our SaaS a few weeks into the Covid-19 outbreak and the adoption has been amazing. While doctors in our markets were traditionally hesitant to move away from in-person consultations, and telemedicine was a tiny fraction of total bookings in normal times, Covid has turned this upside down.” Read the complete interview here.
But the biggest wave for consumer digital healthcare marketplaces is yet to come. Global Healthcare spending is $7.8T, with just a small proportion associated with startup and scaleup activity.
Unpacking consumer healthcare services
Consumer healthcare startups have a combined value of more than $68 billion; we can expect to see this multiply in many key sub-sectors. Our interactive consumer healthcare landscape including insurance, pharmacies, mental health, telemedicine & appointment booking, home diagnostics, elderly care, mental health, dental and medical procedures, physicians, DNA testing, and femtech.
The pressure facing healthcare systems undoubtedly increased during Covid-19.
Chief Financial Officer of IoT healthcare company Borda Technology, Emre Tok told us “healthcare operations are unmanageable, causing lack of quality and inefficiency. Operational awareness and insights with actionable IoT data is necessary. Covid-19 made clear healthcare infrastructure is insufficient and inefficient. Hospitals could do a better job tracking patients’ journeys and utilize critical assets such as ventilators”.
Underutilized assets, undigitized patient-doctor and doctor-doctor communication, and operational inefficiency remain big challenge in the sector. VC-funded healthtech startups might represent a combined market cap of $46B, but with global consumer health spending now topping $7.8T, some big opportunities lie ahead.