Big data, analytics lead digital health funding: 6 mid-year insights

Digital health startups saw slightly more than $2 billion in venture funding in the first half of 2016, putting this year's venture funding on track with 2014 and 2015 levels, according to a report from digital health-focused venture fund Rock Health.

Here are six key findings from Rock Health's mid-year report.

1. Venture funding in the first half of 2016 didn't surpass 2014 and 2015 levels, but it indicates that there is sustained activity in this arena, especially during a time when experts expected funding to decline, according to Rock Health. However, funding is approximately $191 million below where it was halfway through 2015, which was a record year.

2. The average deal size of the 153 deals so far in 2016 is $13.3 million.

3. Six digital health categories accounted for more than half of all digital health funding so far this year, with analytics and big data taking the top spot with $309 million, indicating 118 percent year-over-year growth. Wearables and biosensing followed with $217 million, as did population health with $184 million, personal health tools and tracking with $132 million, EHRs and clinical workflows with $127 million and digital medical devices with $122 million.

4. Pittsburgh-based UPMC is the top corporate investor so far with five deals.

5. There was just one initial public offering in the first half of 2016 (NantHealth), compared to the previous two years which had five each in the first half of the year.

6. Of mergers and acquisitions, there are fewer transactions in the first half of the year compared to last year (87 versus 92, respectively), but the deal value is significantly higher ($10.4 billion this year compared to $6 billion in 2015).

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