CB Insights Report: Global Telehealth Investment is Still on The Rise

Kat Jercich, Healthcare IT News

August 2021

Researchers found a 169% year-over-year increase in global telehealth investment, with the top five deals alone worth $1.5 billion.

A new report from CB Insights found that global telehealth investment rose for the fourth consecutive quarter in Q2 of 2021 – with teletherapy deals representing a substantial share.

The State Of Telehealth report found that much of the growth was pushed by accelerating digital transformation initiatives, as well as patient experience prioritization.

At the same time, stakeholders and thought leaders voiced concerns about health inequity, and lobbyists mounted the pressure for long-term regulatory reform.

WHY IT MATTERS

The telehealth train has continued to chug along, despite dire warnings from health advocates about what might happen if the public health emergency expires without any action from Congress.

Indeed, the CB Insights report was optimistic from a financial perspective: It found that global telehealth investment grew 17% quarter-over-quarter compared to Q1 of 2021, and 169% year-over-year, to reach a record high of $5 billion across 163 deals.

As far as segments go, telemedicine providers, platforms and marketplaces saw their first decline in six quarters, with mergers and acquisitions at a record high.

Meanwhile, teletherapy – especially with regard to mental health and chronic diseases – was an investor hotspot, and virtual care enablement companies saw a funding high.

Remote monitoring and diagnostics companies raised $841 million across 33 deals, with decentralized lab tests and vital sign monitors flagged as notable business development areas.

And telepharmacy had a strong funding quarter, particularly when it came to direct-to-consumer brands.

The report also found that telehealth visits appear to be stabilizing at levels above those pre-pandemic, although they are still below the rates seen in March and April 2020.

THE LARGER TREND

Retail giants in the United States appear to be betting big on telehealth, even amidst looming uncertainty about its regulatory future.

Walmart Health and Amazon Care have both signaled their plans to expand virtual care throughout the country, while established telemedicine vendor Amwell announced two acquisitions this week.

But it's not all rosy: Amwell competitor Teladoc reported a $133 million net loss this past quarter.

ON THE RECORD

"While all telehealth segments saw acquisitions during the quarter, the two biggest hot spots were virtual/digital care enablement and telemedicine providers, platforms and marketplaces," observed CB Insights researchers.