The global telehealth market is set to grow tenfold between 2013 and 2018, according to new research from IHS Technology, as medical providers increasingly look to remote communications and monitoring technology to reduce costs and improve care quality.
According to the research, global revenue for telehealth devices and services will grow from $440.6 million in 2013 to $4.5 billion in 2018, with the number of patients using telehealth services rising from less than 350,000 to about seven million over the same period.
“Amid rising expenses, an aging population and the increasing prevalence of chronic diseases, the healthcare industry must change the way it operates,” said Roeen Roashan, medical devices and digital health analyst at IHS Technology. “Telehealth represents an attractive solution to these challenges, increasing the quality of care while reducing overall healthcare expenditures.”
The results of telehealth programs have revealed sharp decreases in readmission rates and mortality rates, along with increases in adherence through patient engagement, says IHS Technology – benefits that make a strong business case for telehealth and will result in greater support for it from regulatory bodies.
As a consequence, providers will increasingly integrate telehealth solutions into healthcare delivery.
IHS Technology argues that the introduction of mobile health hubs, in particular, is boosting the market by lowering the cost of healthcare and increasing overall value propositions.
Technology is likely to play an especially significant role in managing the chronic conditions of people aged 65 and older, with cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, cancer and obesity becoming increasingly prevalent.
As noted by the market-research company, while telehealth has largely been applied to post-acute patients so far, providers are now looking to monitor the health of entire populations – further expanding the addressable market for telehealth solutions.
The expected growth in wearable technologies is also likely to benefit the expansion of telehealth services, says HIS Technology.