For decades, an unsolved problem in healthcare across nations has been lack of access. Be it under-developed, developing, or developed nations, all of them, in one way or the other, face issues with access to healthcare. While availability of quality healthcare becomes a different question, the need for basic facilities in remote areas continues to worry policy makers. It was in technology that healthcare found its solution to lack of access. With internet, cameras, and growing literacy among rural population, a new technology “Telehealth” was born. In the past few years, global telehealth market has gained impetus, and is bound to grow further in the coming years.
With access to healthcare being a right of every human being, there will be several other factors that will aid growth in the global telehealth market.
Large Rural Population to Sustain Demand
United Nations’ department of economic and social affairs points out that about 45% of the world’s population resides in rural areas. This fact itself forms basis for the huge populace that the global telehealth market will have to access in the coming years. While World Bank and United Nations predict that the urban population is expected to grow steadily, thanks to urbanization, but the volume of people that players in the global telehealth market will have to cover will still be enormous. This will ensure sustained growth in the global telehealth market.
Most rural areas lack basic healthcare facilities, while remote regions like tribal villages deep inside forests have to travel miles to reach a primary healthcare center. This fact should draw attention of companies in the global market for telehealth.
Pressure to Reduce Disease Burden to Support Growth
High mortality rate and incidence of epidemics is a sign of country’s economic position. The amount of loss incurred by a nation in the form of humans accounts for loss in economy. That is, death of a young adult to a easily preventable disease amounts loss of a human resource that could add to the per capita income contribution, thus adding to the GDP of the country. As a result, countries are expected to ensure communicable and preventable diseases do not increase burden. Trends show that people from rural areas are prone to the risk of such diseases due to lack of facilities and awareness. Hence, countries indulge into healthcare projects that reach out to the remotest parts of their nation, and screen rural population regularly for diseases. Telehealth plays a significant role in these campaigns, and as a result the global telehealth market will flourish in the next few years.
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Opportunities Lie beyond Diagnosis
Until few years ago, telehealth was considered a tool for diagnosis. But today, technology has enabled performing surgeries. This aids healthcare providers in not only being able to tend to patients if they need a procedure right away, but also prevent the hassles of travel and reduce treatment cost. Not only that, it aids in early diagnosis of deadly diseases like cancer, which have string impact on treatment.
Further, telehealth facilities can also come into help while tending to emergency cases. In cases of an unfortunate event or a case of complicated pregnancy, doctor does not have to spend hours traveling to the village or the other way around. Through telehealth, the physician can easily understand and render treatment. This will bring down mortality rates, and ease treatment. As technology continues to amaze the world, telehealth will be no different. With advanced research, days are not far when players in the global telehealth market will be selling products that help doctors treat complicated diseases like cancer. As countries mount their focus on healthcare spending, public and private insurances make healthcare affordable, and as people become more aware about diseases and treatments, the demand for products in the global telehealth market will only soar in the future.