In India, the system barely held against the densely populated country’s needs as the virus spread. This broken state of our healthcare and our grave dependence on it for survival during the pandemic emphasized the need for infrastructure development, investment, and innovation in healthcare. There is rapid adoption of technology, driven by the Covid-19 pandemic, proving to be a booster for the country’s healthcare ecosystem, steering, it towards unprecedented digital transformation and innovation.
According to the recently released IAMAI-Praxis report, the Indian Healthnet industry is expected to grow by 39% in the next few years. When this report is compared with the Indian Health-tech market size, it stands at US$1.9 billion, less than 1% of the total healthcare market.
For an important emerging market like India, which is expected to surpass China next year to be the most populated country in the world, there’s room for tremendous growth. Many factors are helping to drive the HealthTech industry in India for rapid growth in the coming years.
Drivers of health tech industry:
Covid 19 pandemic accelerating digital transformation and innovation
The chasm between technological innovation and adoption in healthcare has steadily been increasing and become more apparent. There is no shortage of cutting edge innovation happening in the healthcare space like CRISPR gene editing, cloning, bionic eyes and more. Even today, post the global pandemic the healthcare industry primarily operates on physical records, decades after electronic healthcare records were introduced. The challenge lay with scaling these kinds of technologies systemwide.
The Covid 19 pandemic necessitated the need for health records to go digital as patients worldwide were treated in isolation wards, with no visitors and minimal medical staff. Any communication with loved ones had to be through digital means, to curb the spread of the virus. This temporary adoption has changed consumer behavior for the better, with digital adoption outlasting the pandemic. In a very short period, the conditions that the pandemic placed on the healthcare system has very rapidly changed how the industry operates.
Massive investor interest and potential to make money in the healthcare space
Periods of intense suffering act as a catalyst for seismic shift and technological innovations, the Covid -19 pandemic was one such catastrophic event. The healthcare crises of the century were a wakeup call for the world, making us realise the dependence of global population on this industry. This has attracted investor to consider the investment opportunities and growth potential inherent in the healthcare sector. With digital healthcare segment expected to grow by 17.4% between 2021 and 2027, healthtech has been one of the top three segments attracting massive funding.
Wider adoption of new models such as e-health and tele medicine
Strong adoption, favorable consumer perception, and massive investment into the e-health and tele medicine space are all contributing to the continued growth of telehealth in 2021. New analysis indicates telehealth use has increased 38X from the pre-COVID-19 baseline.
Growing need for healthcare data management
The Covid-19 Pandemic mandated the use of digital records as the need of the hour to curb while handling the infectious virus. Rise in the amount of digital data storage in healthcare organizations is expected to drive the growth of the healthcare data storage market in the future. Advances in big data analytics tools and medical imaging, as well as increased availability of real-time data to support clinical decision-making, are contributing to the rapid growth of medical data volumes. With digitization of healthcare records and the post pandemic new norm of transacting through digital means has firmly cemented the healthcare data storage segment as a necessity whose prominence is only going to increase with wider integration and adoption.
Growing personalization of care
The last decade has educated the Indian population on the importance on one’s health and increased standards of living has enabled consumption in personal health industry. People have started demanding personalized care, willing to spend for their health and wellbeing. There is increased awareness about some of the prominent benefits of wearables across the care continuum viz. early identification of health risks, positive lifestyle and behavioral changes and personalization of care. With more innovation and investment in the Health-tech industry, the demand for personalization and it’s delivery by the industry is only going to ease, overcoming the current barriers.
Investment and growth of health-tech are helping the healthcare industry reach its long-awaited goal of reducing healthcare costs while improving patient outcomes. This result is particularly important given the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. By carefully choosing the pools of value and strategies to prioritize, healthcare investors and companies can effectively thrive in the rapidly growing digital health sector and improve healthcare for patients around the world.