It’s survival of the fittest for health tech

these are dark days For health tech startups.

According to market research firm CB Insights, funding for US digital health startups is set to drop from over $11 billion in the fourth quarter of 2021 to $3 billion in the third quarter of 2022.

Venture capitalists are holding back on investment due to fears of a recession and rising interest rates, threatening a period of stagnation in medical innovation, Ben and Ruth report.

The carnage among startups is huge. Some examples include:

  • Ro, which expanded into online primary care during the pandemic and spawned a bevy of home testing startups — including Modern Fertility, Grandma and Kit as well as at-home-care software startup WorkPath — laid off 18 percent of its workforce has been closed. during summer. CEO Zacharias Reitano told the employees The firm needs to narrow its focus.
  • let carbon health 8 percent of its employees in June. CEO Eren Bali said in a blog post that the primary care firm could no longer rely on investors and needed to turn a profit.
  • cycle 17 percent reduction of its employees in August. The Austin, Texas, firm is switching gears. CEO Michelle Davy said in an email to employees that it needed to grow beyond its business of providing messaging, scheduling and payment services.

Telehealth Decreases: During the pandemic, virtual care began to emerge to avoid crowding at doctors’ offices and hospitals.

But now that the Covid scare has subsided, so has the use of telehealth, even though it is still well above pre-pandemic levels.

So companies that are moving away from telehealth and into software are looking for investors.

Bioformis, which makes products to help doctors monitor patients’ conditions at home, raised $320 million on a $1 billion company valuation, according to data research company PitchBook. Another company, Refai Health, which makes software that connects doctors with clinical trials, raised $220 million in April at a $4.6 billion company valuation.

not save: The sector cannot look to Washington, DC for relief. The Federal Reserve remains committed to raising rates more to reduce inflation. And a divided Congress is set to assume power in January. The coming Congress is less likely than the current one to agree on legislative measures.

Help could come to the fringes if Congress expands public health emergency rules, allowing people to more easily access telehealth.

This is where we unearth the ideas and innovators shaping healthcare.

Can technology help keep track of patients and lighten the load on health care workers? Some mental health hospitals in the United Kingdom are testing infrared cameras to track patients’ vital signs, reports the Financial Times.

Share news, tips and feedback with Ben Leonard [email protected]Ruth Reeder at [email protected]carmen pon et [email protected] or on grace scallions [email protected]

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on us today pulse check podcast, Katherine Ellen Foley talks with Christa Maher about why RSV, or respiratory syncytial virus, in children is worse this season than last season as an increase in caseload fills pediatric hospitals.

carmen caught Republicans have now secured a majority, with Representative Chris Smith (RNJ), the presumptive incoming chair of the Foreign Affairs Africa, Global Health and Human Rights subcommittee.

He filled her in on his 2023 priorities:

  • Reauthorizing PEPFAR. The President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief “has been lifesaving beyond words.”
  • Promotion of vaccination of children including polio. “We have to make sure [is] Otherwise these things will come back, and will come back with a vengeance.”
  • pass global brain health act. Smith says he has been trying to get the act passed for 15 years. It promotes research on autism, Alzheimer’s and hydrocephalus, a build-up of fluid in the brain.

Smith said developing countries lag behind in access to treatment for brain diseases.

“I heard on autism – and unfortunately, if you have a diagnosis – which you don’t usually get in Africa and other developing countries, you’re just left out. There’s no early intervention,” he said.

He said: “I want to increase the grant [nongovernmental organizations] And governments build capacity for early intervention but share what we at NIH and CDC are doing.

Despite billions in venture funding Despite the influx of technology in recent years, the US health care system has “little to show for it,” a new report by the American Medical Association and consulting firm Manatee Health says.

The AMA and Manatt suggest that new technologies and health care can be integrated by:

, pandemic-era making Permanent Telehealth Policies

, boost funding To research and build digital health care models and strengthen broadband access

, State MPs urged and to create a “narrow exception” to regulators that would let doctors provide care virtually across state lines.

Technology and policy need to break down the fragmentation that limits technology potential between providers, AMA and Manat argue, and roll out evidence-based models more quickly.

“Bridging the digital health disconnect will take time, resources, policy redesign and a commitment by all stakeholders to make care models and companies different,” the report said. “This will be the next big challenge in health care delivery and it will continue to make progress.”

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