The impact of COVID has forced many industries to move to an exclusively online presence or cease to operate at all. The healthcare sector has been no exception, with many Australians and healthcare providers forced to quickly create and effectively use what we now know as ‘telehealth’. The past several months have paved the way for a significant shift in the way we utilise technology for health appointments and many believe this convenient method is here to stay in a post-COVID world. So which companies have seized this newfound opportunity within the healthcare index and how have they performed?
Healthcare software company, Global Health (ASX: GLH), have a comprehensive portfolio of applications which digitally connect clinicians and consumers across aged care, general practitioners, hospitals, pharmacies, and specialists. The company’s solutions essentially make healthcare company operations smoother by housing their electronic medical records. The company reported that COVID-19 has propelled the adoption of remote care models, with Global Health securing new contracts primarily in hard-hit Victoria.
Smarthome technology company, Intelicare (ASX: ICR), have developed in-built home sensors to record and observe the activity of seniors and disabled people in relation to their eating, personal hygiene, sleep and bathroom routines. The sensors transmit the recorded data to an app that sends mobile alerts to carers and family members should there be any unusual activity in their behaviour or routines.The AI technology aims to reduce the need for carers and allow seniors to remain living in their own homes for longer, without compromising their health or wellbeing. It is easy to see the demand for an integrated service now more than ever as older people are more likely to experience severe COVID symptoms and there have been large COVID-19 outbreaks across Metropolitan Melbourne in aged-care.
Software company, 1st Group Limited (ASX: 1ST), have spent their lockdown developing software which connects users to a variety of providers offering telehealth and facilitates online bookings. The company launched EasyTelehealth in the second half of this year, which allows telehealth appointments booked though their platform to take place through an encrypted service without the need for additional software such as Zoom or Skype. Their platforms aren’t just limited to telehealth either, with users able to search and book appointments with just about any type of health professional through myhealth1st.com.au. The company has also recently partnered with OpenPay (ASX: OPY), allowing people to Buy-Now, Pay-Later, their healthcare needs.
ResApp (ASX: RAP) is another company that has been working on apps for instant diagnostic tests for respiratory disease such as pneumonia, asthma and respiratory tract diseases that mirror clinical testing in their quality. Their ResAppDX-EU acute respiratory diagnostic test is approved by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) and in July, the company signed an agreement with Coviu Global Pty Ltd, Australia’s leading telehealth platform provider, to make ResApp’s platform available through the platform in return for licensing fees.
Respiratory Management Company, Adherium (ASX: ADR), has also secured agreements as a result of the increased need for telehealth after their technology was agreed to be integrated into a US telemedicine platform. The BlueTooth technology attaches to a patient’s asthmatic inhaler and sends data to the user’s smartphone via their app regarding usage and sending medication reminders.
Pregnancy Monitoring Technology company, Heramed (ASX: HMD), have benefited from the significant decrease in face-to-face appointments due to the pandemic. The AI powered pregnancy monitoring solutions can be undertaken in one’s home with access to midwife support if needed, the technology proven to reduce pregnancy stress, reduce care visits, and increase patient satisfaction. Earlier this month, the company announced that they have entered into a partnership with eCare21, a US telehealth platform powered by Dell Technologies.
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