Reported Omicron-Induced Surge in Stay-at-Home Stocks May Have Helped Propel Digital Health Investments Past $14 Billion

Image provided by Pexels

The following post was written and/or published as a collaboration between Benzinga’s in-house sponsored content team and a financial partner of Benzinga.

While scientists don’t know enough yet about Omicron, the latest COVID-19 variant to emerge, early data suggests it might spread more aggressively and prove more resistant to vaccines than earlier variants. That potential threat has investors worried about renewed disruptions to supply chains and economies around the world.

It’s also reportedly spurred growth in stocks like Netflix Inc. NFLX, Zoom Video Communications Inc. ZM, and Peloton Interactive Inc. PTON that have generally benefited from consumers spending more time at home during the pandemic. Zoom and Peloton in particular saw a nearly 6% spike in their prices even as the S&P 500, Nasdaq, and Dow plunged more than 2% in the same time period.

COVID-19 Pandemic Acted as a Testing Ground for Digital Health Technology

Health Management Integration Key to Digital Health Market Growth?

While that growth isn’t enough to put those stocks back at their 2020 peaks, the digital health space has enjoyed yet another record year thanks in part to this interest in stay-at-home stocks. 

Venture capital investments doubled last year from about $7.7 billion in 2019 to $14.6 billion in 2020. In 2021, it exceeded $14.7 billion in the first half of the year, and the momentum hasn’t slowed since. Here’s why the digital health space could be here to stay and what’s driving its rapid growth.

When it became clear that social distancing would be key to slowing the spread of COVID-19, governments around the world acted quickly to implement policy changes that made remote solutions more widely available and usable. 

In healthcare, that meant a surge in telehealth platforms, remote monitoring technology, prescription, and medical equipment delivery, and other tech-based solutions that helped patients get the routine healthcare they needed without having to set foot in hospitals that were overwhelmed with COVID-19 patients.

While many of these policies were originally intended to expire after the virus was under control, the flexibility this technology offers makes it essential to making us better equipped to adapt quickly to future outbreaks without the same degree of disruption that we saw at the start of 2020. 

This adaptability is leading many healthcare professionals and policymakers to push for permanent policy changes that would make these remote healthcare services the new norm for routine and non-critical care.

The pandemic accelerated the growth of the digital health industry, helping it explode from $11 billion to over $62 billion in 2020. Over the next 5 years, analysts predict it will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 26.5%, reaching $475 billion by 2026

Health management tools that allow people to monitor vital signs, track diet and activity, and take charge of their treatment plans are among some of the fastest-growing segments of the market. DarioHealth Corp. DRIO, for example, offers an AI-powered digital platform for managing chronic conditions like diabetes, hypertension, weight, musculoskeletal and behavioral health. 

The app reportedly works with digital monitoring devices like its glucose monitoring system, blood pressure monitor, biofeedback sensors and a smart scale so that patients can track their health and use the app to manage their chronic condition more effectively. Patients can share their blood pressure or glucose level results directly with their doctor and receive custom health management support, all through a mobile app. 

Integrating health management tools with healthcare tools in this way can help give doctors more access to the diet, exercise, and vitals data that their patients are logging on their mobile phones. That may empower both doctor and patient to create more personalized treatment plans and make better-informed decisions about what medical interventions to take and when. 

As innovative tools and integrations continue to emerge, digital health trends that began as emergency solutions during the pandemic might permanently transform healthcare into a more accessible, patient-centric industry.

The preceding post was written and/or published as a collaboration between Benzinga’s in-house sponsored content team and a financial partner of Benzinga. Although the piece is not and should not be construed as editorial content, the sponsored content team works to ensure that any and all information contained within is true and accurate to the best of their knowledge and research. This content is for informational purposes only and not intended to be investing advice.

Posted In: Dario HealthPartner ContentBiotechHealth CareGeneral