Familiarity with online pharmacies in the world
Today, digital health has touched more than a billion lives. Statistics show that online health services in the world are welcomed by people, and predictions indicate that this industry, in addition to changing the health system and focusing from treatment to prevention, will also take over the future of global markets. In the meantime, it is said that the Asian continent has the greatest potential and need for the development of this industry.
Easier access to doctors, nurses, psychologists, centers providing medical services and pharmacies at any time and any place is one of the advantages that has opened the gates of development to mobile applications providing health services. The advantages that the traditional health systems in the world do not take advantage of and have caused people to welcome online health applications.
According to statistics, the global market value of applications providing online health services reached 8 billion dollars in 2018 and is expected to reach 111.1 billion dollars by the end of 2025. However, the statistical research center Statista (a specialized online platform for market data) has predicted that the global mobile health market will exceed 300 billion US dollars by 2025.
Billion dollar revenue of drug sales apps by 2025
As it was predictable, a significant part of the growth and development of this market was due to the spread of the corona virus in the world in 2019 and the imposition of corona restrictions and the need to stay at home to break the chain of infection. This has caused only a few industries to be able to save themselves from the risk of economic bankruptcy during the Covid-19 pandemic; Industries that were able to facilitate people’s access to services and goods by understanding the needs of society.
One of these industries is businesses related to treatment and pharmaceuticals. Launching applications for online preparation of drug prescriptions, non-prescription drugs and health and cosmetic products helped a lot to sustain businesses related to pharmaceuticals and treatment. The Zayoun Research Center, which focuses on accounting and tax issues, estimates that by 2025 the market for apps that allow users to buy health and pharmacy products online will reach $10.5 billion.
Asia, on the wave of digital health development
Among all the countries in the world, estimates indicate that digital health in the Asian continent has more potential for development and can generate up to 100 billion dollars in economic value by 2025. Meanwhile, by 2020, the economic value of digital health in Asia has reached 37 billion dollars. Some features, mentioned below, make Asian countries a suitable place for digital health development. Of course, these factors are not unique to Asian countries and other countries of the world are also affected by them. But the degree of influence of each country is different from these factors.
ageing population: By 2025, Asia will host 456 million seniors aged 65 and over, which constitute 10% of the population. The existence of an aging population increases the demand for health services and increases the need for human resources to provide these services in Asian countries.
Limitations on the provision of services: The average number of doctors and nurses in Asia is lower than the average announced by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). This organization considers the average number of doctors to be 2.7 doctors per thousand people. The World Health Organization (WHO) has also estimated that the world is facing a shortage of 9 million nurses, and Asian countries have suffered the most from the shortage of nurses.
Increasing people’s expectationsStatistics show that today people spend more on health and wellness and expect to receive health services more easily and cost-effectively. The expectations that health service provider applications have been able to meet.
Controlling the growth of medical expenses: Today, Asian governments spend an average of 4.5% of their GDP on medical expenses, which is lower than the average considered by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). Finding a way to control the growth of healthcare costs without compromising the quality of care and patient access to healthcare facilities is an urgent public priority in Asia.
Technological innovation: The continent of Asia is home to half of the internet users in the world, and this has made this continent to be the leader in digital innovation in the world. Investment in the digital health sector by private investors in Asia has grown from 2015 to 2020, and investment is expected to increase in the coming years.
The emergence of mobile health ecosystems in the world
In response to the aforementioned factors, online health businesses are emerging worldwide, especially in Asia. These businesses have tried to provide health services to users at the right time and place by creating a network of doctors, psychologists, health centers and drug suppliers, collecting and monitoring users’ behavioral, social and health data and designing a platform.
In the following, we review some successful examples of health applications and online pharmacies in the world:
Asian applications, leading and future
Medlife is an online pharmacy platform and provider of online medical consultation and home testing services in India. Founded in 2014, the company has a central laboratory based in Bangalore and operates across 29 states in India. This company was bought and merged by PharmEasy in 2021. Medlife currently operates in India under the name PharmEasy.