The exponential rise of telehealth, telemedicine, and remote patient monitoring has a simple explanation: the pandemic has forced healthcare services to be delivered to patients where they are, as opposed to requiring physical presence at healthcare facilities. The dynamic is an incredible shock to a system that is the most expensive in the world, and at the same time, not traditionally patient-centric. But these are very early days, and real change is brewing.
The sudden preference that patients not visit facilities has fueled a new economy overnight, as the patient-centric modalities — livestream video, remote devices, and asynchronous communications — are now in high demand by patients and providers. Regulatory frameworks have played along to throw fuel on the fire. The new economies have some obvious short-term winners (livestream video), but the pandemic will commoditize such services, and successful technologies that effectively deliver patient care for chronic diseases will create true disruption.