According to Fitch Ratings, the high increase in Telehealth services during the coronavirus pandemic benefited healthcare information technology (HCIT) companies, but a drop in demand after the pandemic will not have a negative credit impact. A changing healthcare market poses a threat to HCIT companies. Efforts to move to value-based care, provider consolidation, and regulatory changes are among the dangers.
Secular trends, on the other hand, continue to boost demand for HCIT services, bolstering revenue, operating profitability, and cash flow growth in the long run. The epidemic had immediate and severe consequences for the healthcare industry. During the peak of the lockdown, healthcare professionals set aside capacity to deal with the rise in infections, resulting in significant reductions in non-COVID-19 patient care.
During the peak of the lockdown in April 2020, virtual visits increased by 12–13%, accounting for up to 10% of overall processing traffic. Although telemedicine volumes have decreased, they are still higher than pre-pandemic levels. During the pandemic, a supportive regulatory environment aided the expansion of telemedicine services. For example, the Department of Health and Human Services exempted some privacy and security regulations under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). This allows Telehealth services to be delivered over popular consumer conferencing platforms that would otherwise be noncompliant.