As technology advances and we move from manual and labor intensive methods of conducting business the health sector has not been left behind. In trying to bring together health, healthcare, society and digital technologies; we are seeing evolution of Digital Health.
Digital health is the use of information technology tools, services and processes to deliver health care services or to facilitate better health. It being the most intentional service industry with a lot of consumer expectations the business plan needs to be well planned with the goal of getting it right the first time.
Before investing in one, do a lot of market research to understand competition, gap analysis and read medical literature. Examples of Digital health technology include mobile health(M-health) supported by smartphones and tablets, health information technology(IT) which involves computerized disease registries, electronic medical records systems(EMRs), wearables like Fitbits and smart watches which are designed to collect data of the patient’s personal health and exercise.
New innovations are being made on the daily, and as an investor there are several factors one might consider so as to make a wise and informative investment.
- Products that address all stake holders’ needs –that is payers, providers and patients hence it’s important to know how the product will benefit all the parties.
- Clinical validation of the founding team and ability to lead – it’s very important to look at their expertise, complimentary skills and team. It’s fundamental to have these skills since it will enable other health-care professionals to buy into your product.
- A key differentiator – as David Bradshaw states: “investors love starts ups with a competitive advantage” demonstrating product uniqueness and why it’s better than your competitors’
- Access to customers – accessibility to top-tier clinics, unique partnerships and strong experience in marketing consumer services is important to consider too.
- Potential to generate unique data streams – this is likely to be a strong competitive advantage in future.
- Understand how the health care system works and how your product, service and business plan work within that ecosystem to establishing the relationships you want.
To top it up, implement a corporate compliance program that reflects the different laws and regulations that apply to their solution in an appropriate way bearing in mind the patients’ privacy and confidentiality. In healthcare, you don’t have room for error, and you don’t have much room to learn by doing. You have to be good at what you do. Always strive to have a real function in people’s lives because digital health is about quality, not numbers.
Author: Everlyne Malimo
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