The pandemic spurred many significant and sticky consequences for life in the future. It changed how we live in many ways that will never return to pre-pandemic cultural habits. Late adopters of ecommerce are a good example. Zoom meetings versus flying across the country are another.
One of the most powerfully impacted industries will surely be the healthcare system. Early in the pandemic, it became clear that doctors and nurses needed to be able to screen patients in a manner that wouldn’t necessitate mandatory quarantining if contract tracing showed exposure to Covid. We needed all the doctors and nurses on the job, not sitting at home watching Netflix for 14 days.
As a result, longstanding regulatory hurdles preventing Telehealth were tossed in the garbage, and the floodgates opened. We took quick action to allow the expansion of telehealth services covered by Medicare, to lower the strict HIPAA bar for clinical interactions with patients over digital platforms, and to dismantle prohibitions around interstate barriers.
Those changes will never be repealed, and they now form the bedrock for a wholesale reimagining of the healthcare system. New innovators are getting major traction with models that include satellite clinical services mixed with telehealth and preventative evaluations. The hospital is quickly becoming the last resort rather than the basic unit.
With that in mind, we take a look below at some of the most interesting opportunities coming into focus in this narrative.
Teladoc Health Inc. (NYSE:TDOC) engages in the provision of telehealthcare services using a technology platform via mobile devices, the Internet, video and phone.
Its portfolio of services and solutions covers medical subspecialties from non-urgent, episodic needs like flu and upper respiratory infections, to chronic, complicated medical conditions like cancer and congestive heart failure.
Teladoc Health Inc. (NYSE:TDOC) recently announced its expanded partnership with the National Labor Alliance of Health Care Coalitions (NLA), the largest alliance of labor unions and labor management coalitions, to offer its full suite of virtual care products and services. Teladoc Health’s general medical, specialty care, mental health, expert medical services, chronic condition management, and virtual primary care programs will now be available as part of the exclusive endorsement to the NLA’s Coalitions, their member Funds and their six million members across all 50 states.
“Teladoc Health’s whole-person virtual care services are ideal for Labor members as leaving work for medical care is consequential: the member isn’t paid for hours lost, those lost hours don’t count towards eligibility and it affects employer contributions to the health and welfare Fund,” said Lou Malzone, managing director of the National Labor Alliance. “There is also no other entity able to provide the depth and breadth of services through both a single contract and a single mobile application for members.”
If you’re long this stock, then you’re liking how the stock has responded to the announcement. TDOC shares have been moving higher over the past week overall, pushing about 7% to the upside on above average trading volume. TDOC shares have been relatively flat over the past month of action, with very little net movement during that period.
Teladoc Health Inc. (NYSE:TDOC) managed to rope in revenues totaling $521.7M in overall sales during the company’s most recently reported quarterly financial data — a figure that represents a rate of top line growth of 80.6%, as compared to year-ago data in comparable terms. In addition, the company has a strong balance sheet, with cash levels exceeding current liabilities ($826.4M against $302.1M).
Mitesco Inc (OTCMKTS:MITI) could be a very interesting opportunity as the company ramps up its business, “The Good Clinic”, which is a primary care Telehealth/Brick-&-Mortar hybrid clinic chain set to launch on a national scale, with an initial focus on the Minnesota, Denver, Arizona, and Florida markets.
The company’s Board is made up of the folks who started Minute Clinic and sold it to CVS in 2006. According to the company’s materials, The Good Clinic is being built from the ground up to efficiently and effectively integrate physical primary care treatment with virtual telehealth care. Most healthcare facilities have telehealth as an adjunct element, creating inefficiencies. In addition, Primary Care health services are in very short supply. This puts an extra burden on society because every $1 people spend on primary care saves $13 in the overall healthcare system. We need a new solution, and MITI is poised to fill that niche.
Mitesco Inc (OTCMKTS:MITI) was recently profiled by Zacks Small-Cap Research and given a very positive outlook along with a price target that would represent more than a 200% rally ahead.
According to the research piece, “Our initial valuation for Mitesco, Inc. is $0.53 per share. Our target is based on a 10-year DCF with a 22% terminal EBIT margin and 12% discount rate. We believe the gap between current valuation and our target may reflect: uncertainty surrounding how quickly the company will open clinics beyond 2023, possible need to raise cash to support growth in working investment – under an aggressive new clinic opening scenario.”
We would also note that healthcare is demand-inelastic, meaning that demand for healthcare services doesn’t decline during economic slowdowns or recessions, making healthcare investments recession-proof.
Mitesco Inc (OTCMKTS:MITI) has an integrated telehealth/physical hybrid model, which is an approach whose time has come. The pandemic accelerated society’s acceptance of virtual healthcare by a decade. Given that backdrop, MITI could have tremendous promise as an early mover in the next evolutionary stage of the healthcare system.
American Well Corp. (NYSE:AMWL) engages in the provision of online healthcare services. It offers a single platform to support all telehealth needs from urgent to acute and post-acute care, chronic care management, and healthy living.
The company’s services include urgent care, behavioral health, breastfeeding support, chronic care, nutrition counseling, pediatrics, telestroke, and virtual primary care.
American Well Corp. (NYSE:AMWL) recently announced the launch of “Mind Your Mind” a new mental health initiative designed to raise awareness for mental health issues and help people receive care via a licensed therapist or psychologist through the award-winning Amwell mobile app or desktop experience, at a low cost. As part of this initiative, Amwell is partnering with actress, singer, and mental health advocate Ashley Tisdale and additional social influencers to offer a limited-time promotion ($10 first visit) to people who use the exclusive coupon codes including ASHLEY10 from Dec. 2021 through Feb. 2022.
“I’ve been very open about my mental health journey,” said Ashley Tisdale, actress and singer. “For me, talking about what I’m going through is one way I can deal with how I’m feeling and make stress or anxiety more manageable, which is why I’m excited to be partnering with Amwell. For those who haven’t yet found the right therapist or may be having a hard time building in-office therapy into their schedules, Amwell’s online therapy visits could be a game-changer. It’s amazing the difference even a single visit can have for people who need care, so I’m happy to help spread the word.”
The context for this announcement is a bit of a bid, with shares acting well over the past five days, up about 6% in that timeframe. Shares of the stock have powered higher over the past month, rallying roughly 4% in that time on strong overall action.
American Well Corp. (NYSE:AMWL) managed to rope in revenues totaling $62.2M in overall sales during the company’s most recently reported quarterly financial data — a figure that represents a rate of top line growth of -0.5%, as compared to year-ago data in comparable terms. In addition, the company has a strong balance sheet, with cash levels exceeding current liabilities ($790.4M against $127.1M).
Other key innovators leading the revolution in the healthcare space include Hims & Hers Health Inc. (NYSE:HIMS), Well Health Technologies Corp. (OTC US:WLYYF), Doximity Inc. (NYSE:DOCS), Nuance Communications Inc. (Nasdaq:NUAN), and Cerner Corp. (Nasdaq:CERN).