The market for home health technologies is poised for strong growth and will have an enormous impact on the health care ecosystem over the next five years, according to projections released this week.
By 2020, 78.5 million consumers will utilize home health care technologies, says independent research and consulting firm Tractica in a report titled “Home Health Technologies.” In turn, the home health tech industry is anticipated to achieve revenues of $13.7 billion by that time, a compound annual growth rate of 26.6% over the forecast period.
The increase from 14.3 million tech users in 2014, the firm notes, will largely be driven by technologies that improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the overall health care system, particularly among tech such as remote monitoring and telehealth to coordinate virtual physician consultations.
“Key factors driving interest in home health care technologies include rising health care costs, aging populations, and a rise in the number of people living with chronic diseases,” said Charul Vyas, principal analyst of the report, in a written statement.
Tractica defines home health technology as connected devices, services and applications used by consumers outside of a clinical setting for medical, health or wellness purposes.
“Technology is the third piece of the puzzle that will move the needle on connected home health offerings,” Tractica says in the report. “Medical establishments realize that consumers want more input and decision making power in regard to their own healthcare. Home health technologies offer one avenue to allow this change in consumer demand.”
The report identifies home health tech as addressing four main use cases, including chronic and post-acute care; routine, non-emergency, ongoing care and treatment; eldercare; health maintenance and wellness.
Addressing these specific focus areas will be the key to cost containment in the years to come, thus furthering market growth for home health technologies within the context of changing demographics.
“Today, approximately 12% of the world’s population is over age 60 and the percentage of people in this demographic is expected to double by 2020,” Tractica says. “As people age, they are also much more likely to develop a chronic condition. This clearly opens up opportunity for chronic disease management, eldercare, and aging on home initiatives.”
However, significant challenges remain in promoting greater widespread adoption and usage of these technologies, Vyas added, including regulatory issues, data privacy and security, as well as the technology’s interoperability and integration capabilities.
“The fragmented and still developing ecosystem of applications, services, and devices in home health technology still poses challenges to adoption and full utilization of capabilities,” says Tractica. “Attention will also need to be focused on interoperability and integration issues with existing health care infrastructure and systems, both useful to help create a more rounded picture of patient health, particularly as the amount and nature of patient health data collected grows.”
Written by Jason Oliva