Why is the US pouring billions more into health tech funding than any other country?

The news: The US leads health tech funding so far this year, with $31.9 billion in VC investment, per TechCrunch.

  • China trails second with $4.1 billion in health-tech VC funding.
  • And the UK is third with $3.8 billion.
  • While the US is spending much more than its counterparts, they’re catching up: Since 2016, the UK’s health tech investment grew ninefold from $420 million, while US investment grew 3.4 times.

Why is the US investing nearly 8X more in digital health than other countries?

  • US healthcare costs and spending are the highest in the world. The US’ per capita healthcare spending is already almost 2X the average of other wealthy countries.
  • Yet it ranks last in quality of care and health system performance when stacked up against other high-income countries (like Canada, the UK, and Australia), per The Commonwealth Fund’s August 2021 analysis.

Digital health solutions could help save a ton on healthcare spending in the long haul, and is likely the motivating factor for high investments.

  • For example, remote patient monitoring companies like Vivify Health and Current Health have already been able to demonstrate value in the form of better health outcomes and cost-savings for their health system partners.
  • To add, digital health tech that improves operational efficiency can help reduce US healthcare costs by around $180 billion.

What’s next? More international digital health startups might eye the US market to score funding dollars—we’re already starting to see this happen with some AI and RPM startups.

  • For example, UK-based AI-driven digital health company Babylon Health expanded to the US market last year via a tie-up with NY-based health system, Mount Sinai.
  • And more recently, Swedish telehealth startup Kry raised $312 million to help it expand its global footprint beyond the European market it operates in (Sweden, Norway, Germany, the UK, and France).