SALERNO, Italy – While relatively new in home health care, digital therapeutics have the potential to disrupt the industry and save billions of dollars, experts say.
A recent report by Grand View Research estimates the digital therapeutics industry will be worth more than $9 billion by 2025.
“It’s a great trend that has transformational power,” said Roberto Ascione, CEO of health care consultants Healthware International, on a recent edition of the Digital Health Today podcast. “It’s a fascinating innovation.”
Digital therapeutics are a category of mobile apps, wearable devices and telehealth platforms that provide remote monitoring and help patients modify their behavior to treat specific diseases and conditions like heart disease, diabetes and COPD.
In 2016, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced that it would reimburse digital therapeutic programs like those from Omada Health, Canary Health and Blue Mesa Health as part of a Centers for Disease Control-approved Diabetes Prevention Program, a lifestyle modification program clinically proven to be more effective than drug alternatives.
The Grand View report concluded that although the burden of chronic diseases is huge and requires effective management, digital therapeutics offer a wide range of services that propel users to embrace healthy habits and efficiently track and manage their conditions.
“Digital therapeutics is envisaged to become a significant market segment in the coming years,” the report’s authors wrote.
Ascione said digital therapeutics was a strong theme at the recent Frontiers health care innovation conference, an event he chairs and co-hosts each year.
“We could really see where pharma and health device companies can play a big role in helping digital therapeutics to scale,” he said. “They have the access and global distribution capabilities.”
Since digital therapeutics can be delivered at a low cost, and because they are being proven to help prevent disease progression, the technologies have the potential to save insurers billions of dollars, Ascione said.
“We’re still at the beginning, but we’re starting to see bigger things in that space,” he said.