A recent report from the IQVIA Institute entitled “The Use of Medicines in the US 2022” is interesting reading if you believe that trends in human medicine eventually show up in veterinary medicine. Some notable results…
First, the overall use of telehealth has returned to pre-pandemic levels at the end of 2021, or 1-2% of patient visits. Mental health saw dramatic increases in telehealth during the pandemic, peaking at about 30% of all visits, and is now about 20%. Telehealth visits for chronic diseases, like hypertension, diabetes, and HIV/AIDS, peaked between 5 to 11% of visits, but are now down to 1-2%, because these diseases frequently require testing and bloodwork.
Second, spending on specialty medicines in the US is 55% of total net manufacturer revenue. These medicines treat autoimmune diseases, oncology, and multiple sclerosis and is now about double the 2011 level, which was 28%.
Finally, all the growth in medicine spending in the past 5 years, ($82.0B) has been due to new products ($87.7B). The volume impact of patented products already launched (+$94B) was completely offset by products going off patent (-$93.0B).
Veterinary medicine often follows in the footsteps of human health, so what can we learn from this report? Innovation focused on specialty products is likely to drive future growth in veterinary medicine, while innovation in services, like telehealth, will be a harder sell.