When the coronavirus surfaced in China in December 2019, it set off a domino effect worldwide – with the number of active cases snowballing rapidly.
By February 2020, the daily increase in people falling ill with Covid-19 was in the thousands and -though international borders closed down and households went into lockdown – active cases skyrocketed in June to approximately 130,000 new cases a day, according to Worldometer.
Major global cities from New York, to London, and Mumbai found their healthcare systems direly overwhelmed by the tsunami of symptomatic citizens. Many countries tried to “flatten the curve” of the contagious infection to manage the unprecedented overload on public health systems, and to distribute the demand for medical care, intensive care unit beds, and ventilators over a longer period.
This large-scale global pandemic made healthcare – an industry traditionally slow to adopt innovation because of cumbersome regulatory and governmental pathways, low IT budgets, legacy systems, lack of trained personnel, and more – ripe for disruption. Technology entrepreneurs, unfettered by politics, bureaucracy and public financial constraint, entered the mainstream for the first time in order to triage the chaos raging in medical care in the face of Covid-19.