The health industry is expected to grow in many ways in the next year and beyond as technology advances, generational interests change, and convenience becomes increasingly important. As a practitioner, exploring new ways to support and heal your community is an exciting time. Let's dive right into the biggest trends for this year.
1. Virtual Care Isn't Going Anywhere
It's no surprise that the pandemic has accelerated the growth of telemedicine. With many people avoiding in-person healthcare visits, telemedicine has become a popular alternative for consultations, diagnoses, and treatment. Let's face it; everyone got used to it. According to Reportlinker, the global telemedicine market is expected to reach $197.55 billion by 2028.
The ease of receiving medical care remotely through video conferencing, phone calls, and messaging is a major factor driving this significant growth.
2. Millennials Prioritize Self-Care
Self-care and wellness have become increasingly popular worldwide, with a growing interest among Millennials and Gen Z. This trend is expected to continue in 2023 as people prioritize their mental and physical health. According to a survey conducted by OnePoll, the pandemic has altered how different generations allocate their time and money for health and wellness.
The survey found that compared to boomers, more millennials intend to boost their spending on financial health in the coming year (39% vs. 23%). Additionally, out of all respondents, 67% believe that investing in health and wellness products or services today is more affordable than incurring hospital bills in the future.
This trend is reflected in the products and services that are becoming more popular, such as meditation apps, supplements, self-help books, online fitness/apps, skincare products, sleep tracking devices and apps, CBD products, wearable technology, and more.
3. Fasting Goes Mainstream
Weight loss and obesity management are now and likely always will be a continually growing niche. The report published by The Brainy Insights, global weight loss and weight management is expected to grow from USD 224.24 billion in 2021 to USD 405.37 billion by 2030.
One of the most popular current methods for weight loss is intermittent fasting. Research journals are now touting the benefits of lowering diabetes and fat loss, and products designed to help with fasting are also rising. But fasting for weight loss isn't the only type of fasting gaining popularity.
Screen time or social media fasting, which involves taking a break from screens or social media platforms to improve mental health, is now a thing (thankfully), and I suspect we will see and hear more about this in 2023.
4. Medical Robots are Making Waves
Medical robots are becoming an important trend in the healthcare industry. According to Mordor
Intelligence, Robotic-assisted surgical equipment currently makes up the majority of the market, with industry leader Intuitive Surgical earning over $4 billion annually.
Intuitive Surgical produces the da Vinci surgical robots, which surgeons use to make more precise incisions and sutures. Medical Device Network reported that globally, 4% of surgeries are performed with the aid of robots. This is still in its infancy but offers a glimpse into where the future of healthcare is heading.
5. Mental Health Concern Rises
You probably see this daily in your practice, but it's now more of a crisis than a trend. Mental health conditions were on the rise before the pandemic and now have become a prominent topic of discussion in our society.
The 2022 State of Mental Health in America Report revealed that 19.86% of Americans, or nearly 50 million people, are living with a mental health condition, which is 3 million more than in 2021. Educational institutions and workplaces emphasize mental health more, and students and employees call for more support in this area.
Investors are also capitalizing on the growing concern about mental health through apps such as Calm. The Calm app currently has 4 million paid subscribers and a $2 billion valuation and focuses on lowering stress and anxiety. The general population will need lifestyle tools more and more, as we can all agree the allopathic approach to mental health is heavily pharmaceutical-based. In case you didn't already know, your community needs you now more than ever.
6. Popular Supplements: Probiotics and Prebiotics
The topic of gut health has gained much attention in recent years, largely due to the high incidence of GI problems in the United States. The past focus on gut health was primarily on digestion.
Now, the imbalanced microbiome is taking center stage, and supporting the gut differently is becoming more well-known. A report by Mintel indicates that 78% of American consumers have reported experiencing some form of digestive issue in the past year.
As a result, there has been a significant increase in the demand for gut health supplements. Probiotics and prebiotics! If you're running a supplement line or selling your patients/clients supplements, it's likely that you already offer gut health products, but if not, now is the perfect time to enter this market.
7. Expanding Use of Health Wearables
According to Global Market Insights, the wearable medical devices market value is set to reach USD 750 billion by 2032. The wearable market includes devices for diagnosing or monitoring medical conditions and sleep and fitness trackers.
Fitness and sleep-tracking wearables are becoming more precise in their tracking capabilities and are increasingly using a subscription model. For instance, Amazon's Halo Band is priced at $84.99, but Amazon promotes using the accompanying membership package to get the most out of the technology.
Society is placing a greater emphasis on health and wellness now than ever before. It's evident through the increasing use of technology to provide access to healthcare at home and the ability to monitor illness and assist in surgical procedures. 2023 is an exciting time to be a practitioner as the healthcare industry continuously evolves and adapts to these new trends and advancements.