New Report Shows a Robust, Diversified Health Innovation Market

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Total health innovation funding for the first half of 2020 hit $9.1B, up nearly 19 percent compared to the same period in 2019, according to a new report from Startup Health (https://healthtransformer.co/).

The first quarter of 2020 began strong. With $4.9B raised, it was the most-funded quarter on record for health innovation.

But on January 11, China reported its first coronavirus death, and two months later the World Health Organization declared that COVID-19 was a global pandemic. As StartUp Health observed, “These realities rocked the markets—contracts froze and layoffs began. All bets were off as to how the coronavirus would impact health innovation funding going forward. In analyzing the first quarter’s banner funding, MedCityNews wrote that ‘faced with a global pandemic, the trend is unlikely to continue.’”

Despite the uncertainties introduced by COVID-19 — and in part because of them — the health innovation market remains robust and confident, StartUp Health said. “In fact, with $4.2B raised in Q2 2020, we find ourselves closing out the most-funded six-month period on record,” the company noted.

One reason for the strong performance is the sharp uptick in virtual care. As an example, StartUp Health pointed to DOXY.me (https://doxy.me/), a free SAAS telemedicine platform that was averaging 100 new signups a day in early March. They exploded to almost 50,000 new users during mid-March seeing almost 20,000 signups daily and then leveled out at 5,000 new users daily in April.

“It’s been said that there are decades where nothing happens; and then there are weeks when decades happen,” wrote StartUp Health co-founders Steven Krein and Unity Stoakes in May. “It’s crystal clear to us that over the past several weeks, decades have happened. Our community of entrepreneurs have introduced new health technology solutions to front line healthcare workers, caregivers, researchers and scientists, fellow innovators, patients and families at a scale and pace we would have said was impossible only eight weeks ago.”