Tech innovation is driving healthcare investment: 8 things to know

Increased investment in innovative technology, solutions to ease workforce challenges and rising interest in home care all represent key investment trends for healthcare in 2022 according to a KPMG report published Jan. 25. 

To produce the 2022 Healthcare and Life Sciences Investment Outlook survey, accounting firm KPMG spoke to over 300 leaders in the healthcare and life sciences sectors. The respondents shed light on how political changes, COVID-19 and market forces could change the outlook for investments in 2022. 

Eight key findings:

  1. In 2021, healthcare technology was second only to hospital and health systems in terms of deal volume, with 290 deals. Middle-office systems, consumer engagement and telehealth were all popular deal focuses.

  2. The total deal value for medical devices stood at $79 billion in 2021, with deal volume increasing by 13 percent compared to 2020. 

  3. A major theme driving medical device deals is innovation. Many companies are looking to shape their portfolios with new technologies like smart devices or artificial intelligence- powered platforms. 

  4. About 75 percent of respondents told KPMG that health IT deal activity had surpassed their expectations. 

  5. The most attractive investment options for the next 12 to 24 months were cited as virtual health, EHRs and clinical workflow solutions. This may point to the urgent need for health systems to ease staffing issues and integrate technologies that can help with workflow issues. 

  6. Looking ahead to health IT deals this year, one respondent said, "We expect one of the next frontiers to be deals that help connect data across apps, programs, platforms, electronic health records, and, eventually, health systems.

  7. Large health systems are looking to fund innovation centers and incubation hubs to drive development of new technologies. Hospitals will continue to invest in such new technology as remote patient technology, data analytics and telehealth. 

  8. Investments in home and hospice care are expected to increase in 2022. Acquisitions in the sector increased 28 percent from 2020 to 2021. The sector can expect rising demand driven by patient preference and procedures delayed by COVID-19.

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