Integrated platforms that combine drug delivery and telehealth services are key to success in the growing $700 billion Direct-to-Consumer healthcare market.
Health, wellness and fitness companies focused on Direct-to-Patient or Direct-to Consumer Care are on the cusp of exciting opportunities and unprecedented growth.
It’s part of the trend for Direct-to-Consumer and at-home health services accelerated by the advent of COVID-19.
One recent analysis of Direct-to-Consumer digital health reported that this market already represents a US$700 billion industry including over-the-counter drugs, care management in retail clinics, hearing aids, glasses, contact lenses, and nutraceuticals.
The same report found that 252 (21%) of 1214 digital health companies have pursued a Direct-to-Consumer strategy — representing 36% of the 702 companies offering technologies directly related to patients. Over an eight-year period, Direct-to-Consumer digital health companies reported $7.3 billion in funding.
And the number of health tech companies offering Direct-to-Patient solutions will continue to grow.
That is not to say however that the Direct-to-Patient market is not without its challenges. Companies specializing in health, wellness and fitness must contend with regulations, security and privacy concerns and a current infrastructure that hinder flexibility in meeting changing customer demands.
But opportunities exist for businesses that can perform the dual task of preventing illness and promoting fitness and well being — in short, delivering added value to their customers.
Take for example, new public telemedicine companies like Hims & Hers Health that sell prescription and over-the-counter drugs and personal care products online. Or early stage startups like CareAsthmatic — a care management platform for asthma patients — who are looking to differentiate themselves and gain market share. They are reshaping how healthcare is consumed.
Standing Out in a Competitive Field
This new generation of companies will have plenty of company.
Becker Hospital Review has identified 260+ telehealth companies alone.
The field will only get more competitive as industry giants like Amazon (who paid $753 million to acquire PillPack and its line of consumer health care products) muscle their way into the space.
So how can your company gain the flexibility to pivot and compete for their share of the Direct-to-Consumer healthcare services market?
A Customized Direct-To-Patient Platform is Key
To stand out, Direct-to-Patient companies can benefit from software platforms that grow as you grow.
In the consumer healthcare market, there are companies that can cost effectively manage prescription drug delivery to the home. But they lack a platform to provide health, wellness and fitness services. And vice versa.
It may not be enough to provide a singular set of services; consumers are increasingly seeking alternative forms of healthcare delivery that can handle:
- Virtual episodic care visits
- Digital chronic care management and remote patient monitoring
- Package visits with eRx and delivery
- Home testing and test result consultations
And certainly there is no need to limit revenue streams due to gaps in your technology. To assess your current and future needs, ask yourself:
- Do you have a user-friendly, customizable, integrated platform for automated efficiency or are you relying on a patchwork of software to run your business?
- Do you have integrated, automated analytics, reporting, and decision support across operational, clinical, and financial channels?
If not, platforms now exist that help you combine home monitoring, care management, at home testing, digital pharmacy, and other Direct-to-Consumer services.
Companies like MedleyMed have entered the market that provide customized all-in-one solutions for connecting, prescribing, and engaging with your patients.
Fortunately, they don’t require major investments to your supporting technology or disrupt market tested workflow processes that create value for you, your customers, and your community.