Daniel Ruppar's Blog


A time of change in US HCIT? Trump wins US Presidency

09 Nov 2016

Digital health is an area which has potential to bring disruptive change to healthcare. Two key facets which have supported this in the last decade have been the progression of digitization, as well as activities of the US government from the ACA, HITECH, Meaningful Use, etc….

With the win of Donald Trump as the next US President, this also is a story of disruptive change. As part of a trend tied to backlash from progressive globalization there is an undercurrent of unhappiness in many areas of the globe in the developed world. People are dissatisfied with their leaders, their governments, and the establishment.

From a healthcare standpoint - there has been benefits to healthcare information technology and digital health in the last 8 years. This is why we are where we are now in HCIT market expansion in the US. We also see the imploding of Obamacare, double digit premium increases, and promises not being delivered fully on a program which was supposed provide disruptive change in a positive direction.

What I would hope is if we now have change in US policy in areas which directly impacted health IT, it helps solve some of the problems, and takes a fresh stab at solutions which can further progress the shift to value-based care. Alterations in what has gone on under President Obama does not remove the need to support cost improvements, transparency, outcomes-focused care, patient engagement and wellness. Perhaps Trump’s administration can come up with something to solve issues in interoperability which continue, as well as further progress the market from an incentive standpoint, and help those who are now hurting from leveraging the Exchanges.

We will have however a time of uncertainty in the market. Hopefully we can now come together and embrace change, hope, and what comes in the next administration can help make healthcare in America great again. 

Digital Health M&A Deals You Need to Know from 1H 2016 - Mattel & Sproutling

05 Aug 2016

Digital health is an area rampant with competition, winners, losers and promise. With that brings heavy interest in watching funding activities given the startup environment, as well as over time how those companies move to the next phase of lifecycle. According to StartUp Health, Digital Health funding has reached record levels of $3.9 Billion in the first half of 2016.

This is the second of 5 deals thus far in 2016 I think are particularly interesting, as part of digital healthcare and the ever changing vendor ecosystem. They each were chosen as part of the trend of cross industry exploration of opportunities in the digital health, where acquisitions are expected to be increasingly leveraged as firms strive to take advantage of the growth opportunities in healthcare, or continue to evolve their portfolios in the market.

Mattel & Sproutling

Sector: Pediatric Wearables

Mattel, the leading consumer toy company, acquires pediatric wearable company, Sproutling.

This deal is a second example showcasing large brand consumer company acquisitions into the digital health market, in this case in the evolving pediatric wearable space. Pediatric digital health interests is something we consider as part of broader baby and family tech trends tied as well into consumer connected home.

Companies with interests into the high spend infant market progressively integrate digital health, mobile and technology components into their portfolio and experience offerings for consumers. Mobile apps have now replaced other historical tracking components for the daily living needs of new parents. This is also broadening user expectations in applications for example, to include data analysis, analytics and dashboarding as a differentiator.

With companies looking to target more technology oriented parents, how a wearable can be leveraged as part of infant care is something which will continued to be explored. Sproutling’s approach with their ankle device is something we found more potential utility from vs other approaches such as sensor embedded clothing.

As both consumer and more healthcare oriented manufacturers continue to digitize the nursery, sensors and applications will continue to become part of the common user experience for consumers.

Mattel PR http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/mattel-bolsters-digital-and-smart-technology-capabilities-with-pair-of-strategic-acquisitions-300212408.html

Further related Frost & Sullivan research on digital health at

Creating a Culture of Health - A 2015 Survey of US Consumers http://www.frost.com/nfb5

Wearables: Beyond the Quantified Self - Opportunities in Pediatric and Animal Health http://www.frost.com/q292260648

Wearable Technologies in Clinical and Consumer Health: Strategic Recommendations and Competitive Considerations for a $30 Billion Market Opportunity http://www.frost.com/p8a8

Wearables: Snapshot of Consumer Sentiments on Activity Tracking Devices http://www.frost.com/ne08

Learn more about Frost & Sullivan’s Connected Health program

Click Here

Follow Daniel on Twitter @danielruppar

Image Source: Sproutling

Digital Health M&A Deals You Need to Know in 1H 2016: Pick 1 Mars Petcare & Whistle

18 Jul 2016

Digital health is an area rampant with competition, winners, losers and promise. With that brings heavy interest in watching funding activities given the startup environment, as well as over time how those companies move to the next phase of lifecycle. According to StartUp Health, Digital Health funding has reached record levels of $3.9 Billion in the first half of 2016.

Over the several weeks we will disclose 5 deals which are particularly interesting as part of digital healthcare and the ever changing vendor ecosystem. Each were chosen as part of the trend of cross industry exploration of opportunities in digital health, where acquisitions are expected to be increasingly leveraged as firms strive to take advantage of the growth opportunities in healthcare, or continue to evolve their portfolios in the market.

Deal: Mars-Petcare & Whistle

Sector: Animal Health Wearables

Mars Petcare (provides brands including Pedigree, Iams, Whiskas and Banfield Pet Hospital), and part of consumer foods company Mars, acquires pet wearable company, Whistle.

This deal showcases that the large brand consumer company acquisitions into the digital health market are even extending into the animal health segment as part of portfolio acquisitions, and ties to the same important trend observed with other deals, more human related, including Fossil-Misfit; Nokia-Withings; and Under Armour-MyFitnessPal.

We expect continued startup activity in pet wearables as part of trying to capture part of high consumer spending on our beloved pets. It is still probably a challenging area to widely scale so will be interesting to see what a company like Mars can do here.

Overview on TechCrunch http://techcrunch.com/2016/03/31/whistle-acquired-by-mars/

Further related Frost & Sullivan research on digital health at

Wearables: Beyond the Quantified Self - Opportunities in Pediatric and Animal Health http://www.frost.com/q292260648

Digital Health Grows Up- Is Pharma Guiding the Way? Key themes from the 5th Annual Digital Health Summer Summit and BIO International http://www.frost.com/q296784417

Wearable Technologies in Clinical and Consumer Health: Strategic Recommendations and Competitive Considerations for a $30 Billion Market Opportunity http://www.frost.com/p8a8

athenahealth Acquires RazorInsights

13 May 2015

In line with its strategy of “connecting care”, athenahealth has acquired RazorInsights, a vendor of cloud-based clinical and financial solutions for rural, critical access, and small community hospitals. With this acquisition, ATHN continues its foray into solutions for in-patient care, and extends its presence into the 50-bed-and-under inpatient care environment, which accounts for approximately one-third of the U.S. hospital market. Terms were not disclosed but industry experts speculate that the acquisition price was $40 million.

http://www.athenahealth.com/blog/2015/01/14/athenahealth-acquires-razorinsights

ATHN provides cloud-based services and IT solutions in practice management, EHR, and patient communication, primarily to small independent (ambulatory) physician practices. The company’s core strength has traditionally been more on the services side; their clinical solutions are seen as somewhat weak compared with key ambulatory market competitors like eClinicalWorks and Allscripts.
 
The RazorInsights deal is in line with ATHN’s goal to bolster their enterprise strategy by gaining a foothold in the hospital market and RazorInsights’ cloud-based solutions and small customer base of 25 rural, critical access and community hospitals appears to be a strategic fit for ATHN. The deal is similar to ATHN’s 2011 acquisition of Proxsys, which led to the development of athenaCoordinator, a platform to help hospitals improve connectivity and data transfers across the patient care continuum. That product has had limited uptake.
 
The deal could provide a short term boost to both companies as there is a large and growing market for technologies and services designed to help small hospitals meet the challenges of healthcare reform. Cloud-based solutions offer distinct cost and logistic advantages to small, cash-strapped entities. However, ATHN will need to quickly demonstrate some solid value on this deal, particularly given the results from their almost $300 M acquisition of Epocrates in 2013.
 
Ultimately, ATHN faces an uphill battle with their enterprise strategy. While they do hold some appeal for smaller providers today, those providers will increasing get absorbed by larger entities served by larger IT vendors (e.g., Epic, Cerner, Allscripts); there is a high risk of displacement in that scenario.

 

 

Aetna CarePass Meets Harsh mHealth Reality: What Does this Mean for Digital Health?

22 Aug 2014

The closure of Aetna's CarePass illustrates the struggles companies in the digital health space are experiencing and facing in developing and sustaining users, and business models to scale. No less, the mobile health platform is still a goal, especially in regards to solving problems in cross-application interoperability for users and vendors alike.

In reality, however, many endeavors are exploratory in nature for key healthcare stakeholders, including those of big pharma and payers in digital health. Companies are still learning how to effectively engage consumer and professional users. They're also trying to determine what works in terms of scaled solutions outside of the rampant piloting which goes on for mobile and other progressive technology markets including telehealth and remote patient monitoring.

http://mobihealthnews.com/35976/exclusive-aetna-to-shut-down-carepass-by-year-end/

[VIDEO] Connected Health Markets - Landscape, Value Creation, and the Future of Healthcare

22 Sep 2013

Daniel Ruppar, Global Research Director of Frost & Sullivan's Connected Health program was recently interviewed by HandsOnTelehealth CEO Nirav Desai on a variety of points regarding telehealth, mHealth and other important transformative markets in healthcare.

In this interview, Daniel talks in depth about why there is such an interest in connected health, the big events changing the connected health landscape, and where the greatest opportunities are for creating commercial and clinical value.

Click Here to View the Video of Daniel Ruppar's Interview with HandsOnTelehealth

Minute 1: What do you like to do for fun outside of work?
Minute 2: When you talk about Connected Health – what kinds of solutions are within that umbrella?
Minute 3: Why is there so much excitement around Connected Health?
Minute 5: What areas of Connected Health are getting the most interest?
Minute 9: Where are the gaps between what people are looking for and what’s in the marketplace today?
Minute 14: Have you seen any approaches that make it easy for physicians to access patient info?
Minute 17: What are some of the key events that highlight how the industry is changing?
Minute 21: What are your top do’s and don’ts for people trying to get into the connected health space?
Minute 24: What services does Frost & Sullivan’s Connected Health division provide?
Minute 27: Parting comments on why Connected Health is so important.

Don't rip and replace, use dbMotion-a couple points from Allscripts ACE 2013 in Chicago

23 Aug 2013

Allscripts ACE event 2013 – Chicago, IL, August 20-23, 2013

http://www.allscripts.com/ace2013.html

The Allscripts Client Experience (ACE) is the company’s annual user conference. It offers registrants access to educational sessions, networking opportunities and more. During the event, Allscripts shows clients how to get even more value from the solutions they are using and how to prepare for the enormous change the industry is undergoing. The company also celebrates new innovations and shares many client success stories.

The Analyst’s Perspective by Daniel Ruppar, Research Director, Connected Health (Twitter @danielruppar)

We were invited to come to ACE again this year to hear perspectives from major EHR vendor Allscripts as part of their annual user event. There was a lot of discussion around the products from the Q1 acquisition activity announced at HIMSS from dbMotion and Jardogs. That’s probably timely but the messaging on the dbMotion side was a little thick. It does however help with previous issues regarding interoperability within their own EHR portfolio, and more interestingly presents an Allscripts brand solution which can also provide reach to other vendor systems from EPIC, Cerner, etc…To the point where this was discussed as a point for providers to look to when the question is raised about rip and replace. Overall, positive – now let’s see how that goes in the market.

President and CEO Paul Black also presented a strong front regarding vision of the company, investment in R&D in the highest level in the company’s history, stability of the business financially, the importance of their work in population health, and other points to reassure users, investors and other interested parties like us in Allscripts having a roadmap for the future. Given my own interests, I also was very intrigued by the point of further global expansion being a core point to Allscripts strategy going forward. Their latest new one is Australia; unfortunately I can’t tell you what I learned about other countries of target interest. Overall this was a great event, and hope to share more with you upcoming in our research.

Medtronic Advances Healthcare Services and Solutions Strategy with Acquisition of Cardiocom - The Analyst Perspective

15 Aug 2013

http://newsroom.medtronic.com/phoenix.zhtml?c=251324&p=irol-newsArticle&id=1846808

Medtronic, Inc. announced the closing of the acquisition of Cardiocom, a privately held developer and provider of integrated telehealth and patient services for the management of chronic diseases, in an all cash transaction valued at $200 million.

The Analyst’s Perspective by Daniel Ruppar, Research Director, Connected Health (Twitter @danielruppar)

As healthcare continues to evolve in business model, so do the companies which provide products and services. The medical device space overall is one where companies are seeking to leverage new opportunities in care, how they can interact with the healthcare system, patients, and drive new areas of business. This announcement of Medtronic’s acquisition of Cardiocom is a prime example of this type of transition which is occurring in that industry.

Cardiocom as a leading firm in home health/disease management remote monitoring can enable Medtronic to extend itself to new areas which are important in the changes in healthcare, especially about services which help with aspects of readmission and outcomes in the era of accountable care.

As population management becomes more and more important, healthcare companies are trying to stay competitive by investing in technologies and services that follow the patient across the care continuum. It’s increasingly important to provide solutions that can transition with the patient from the hospital to home. This specific area of telehealth is a key facet of that, and one we see as a leading business opportunity in the telehealth space overall.

For more on our perspectives telehealth – see the following or other research from our Connected Health program on this topic:

Analysis of the North American Telehealth Industry: A CEO's Guide to Convergence between Healthcare and Information and Communications Technologies (http://www.frost.com/nb72)

Telemedicine – Seize the Year: American Telemedicine Association (ATA) Annual International Meeting & Trade Show 2013 (http://www.frost.com/q280793447)

Everis discusses ehCOS and Frost & Sullivan Health IT Award

07 Aug 2013

Everis discusses their ehCOS solution for healthcare IT – Winner of Frost & Sullivan’s New Product Innovation Award in Healthcare Information Technology Systems – Latin America, 2012.

(Note: Video in Spanish)

http://www.everis.com/global/en-US/business-sectors/Paginas/health.aspx

http://www.everis.com

twitter bird

@danielruppar

 

Welldoc Receives Approval for BlueStar - mHealth, prescribed with reimbursement, and in your car!

02 Aug 2013

Source: Digital Health Summer Summit 2013, Welldoc, BlueStar, June 13-14, 2013

As the sister event to the Digital Health Summit (DHSS13) at the International Consumer Electronics Show in January, the Summer Summit is a premier, intimate, and unique forum devoted to the business of digital health. At this year’s event, Welldoc announced the approval of BlueStar, the first mHealth application that can be prescribed,
with reimbursement.


The Analyst’s Perspective by Daniel Ruppar, Research Director for Connected Health, Global 

twitter bird

@danielruppar

One unintentional theme of DHSS13 was centric to Welldoc, starting with the opening keynote by Welldoc President and COO, Dr. Anand Iyer. An important point discussed at the conference was that it happened to coincide with the announcement of BlueStar, a new Welldoc mHealth product, which is both prescribed and reimbursable as part of diabetes therapy. BlueStar provides support for diabetes patients in terms of motivational and behavioral coaching, as well as aspects including smart glucose blood testing and adherence support. It is FDA-cleared for adults with Type 2 diabetes and is directly accessible across form factor platforms, including one most companies are not able to tout—a Ford car.


As the first prescribed, reimbursed mHealth applications, this is a positive step in mobile health (mHealth) and a key highlight in the area in the first half of 2013. As we seek to expand reimbursement for mHealth solutions and other offerings focused on remote medical care, these wins can be leveraged by other developers pursuing the same goal. There is still a long road to go in drawing consumers out of the mindset that healthcare and everything related is an entitlement. A push from self-insured employers can help increase the threshold for this in the United States and set a good precedent for national reimbursement for specific applications. We cannot rely on leadership from Congress or the FDA for the necessary policies needed to push the digital health space forward.


WellDoc’s leadership and creative approach in progressing digital health is a hopeful example for the industry.

Connected Health: Global Perspectives on Identifying and Establishing Your Markets

15 Sep 2012

Frost & Sullivan Growth Opportunity Briefings in Asia Pacific (Tokyo, Seoul, Singapore). Covered by the Korean media in Seoul, Korea. Speakers: Daniel Ruppar, Ajay Sunder from Frost & Sullivan giving combined perspectives from our Healthcare and Information/Communication Technologies groups on this important area of cross-industry convergence and healthcare transformation.

Digital Daily http://www.ddaily.co.kr/news/news_view.php?uid=95205

[Mobile Photos] Live from ATA - San Jose

01 May 2012

MarketWatch talk Q&A in the Business session track, Speaker: Zachary Bujnoch - Senior Industry Analyst, Connected Health

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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