It’s no secret that ‘medtail’ is receiving an incredible boost with COVID-19 continuing to oversaturate the medical space. Investors are recognizing a culture change that will drive more medical facilities to operate out of your traditional retail spaces. Medtail numbers are looking ever more valuable as newly adopted methods of personal care and preventative health are here to stay, even long after the pandemic is over.
“COVID-19 has sped up the inevitability that preventative wellness is no longer a choice,” said Willie Hoag, principal at Tether Advisors. “The retail space is overbuilt, mediocre and redundant. The innovation we’ve seen directed at that space is just the beginning. It’s exciting that a new group of players is filling former retail spots while providing access and convenience to consumers. Most importantly, the convergence could make us a healthier society.”GlobeSt.com
In order to gain an insight on what industry professional feel about medtail investment, GlobeSt.com references Tether Adviser’s retail healthcare outlook 2021—culminating work of months of research during 2020—where 120 executives in commercial real estate, private equity, retail healthcare, and 100 consumers were queried.
“The overall bullishness about medtail is encouraging, and it might actually understate the opportunities we’re seeing,” said Katie Killeen, vice president of Tether Advisors. “Some obstacles remain–the staffing hurdles most medical retailers face are larger than ever, which is significant as reliable personnel are the backbone of every concept. But the larger trends driving medtail that have been turbocharged by COVID-19 clearly have staying power.”
About 80% of CRE, private equity, and retail healthcare respondents believe that medtail investment will increase in 2021. Primarily because the pandemic has run their list of ‘safe-haven’ investments rather dry, but also in an acknowledgment to the growing need for healthcare accessibility.
“Industry players are focusing more on traditional retail locations to emphasize the importance of proximity and convenience. When asked about the single greatest benefit of expanded medtail offerings, commercial real estate and private equity respondents focused on providing convenient access to everyday shopping, retail healthcare pointed to patient-friendly amenities and consumers mentioned shorter wait times.”
Primary Care and Urgent Cares are two types of medical care that may see the most growth since they don’t typically handle life-threatening events like a hospital ER would. Having said that, private cares such as therapy and counseling don’t share in the same hopes because they have been able to circumvent a lot of their services through online means.
Convenience and omnichannel approaches are major factors behind the minds of stakeholders. Retail spaces that would be deemed “prime location,’ for medtail will often be former CVS’s, Walgreens, and Rite-Aids. If medtail investors locate a highly-visible retail-space such as these, they could emerge from their previous side-street locations, increase healthcare options for the community, and bolster Telehealth efforts.
Other sentiments among the queried audience include an embrace to virtual healthcare. Because society is getting used to monitoring its health and vitals through an app, Telehealth importance will inflate. The general consensus is that physical location count doesn’t need to be as high anymore because of the quality of real estate, but all virtual platforms need a physical location, and vice-versa.
“With the exponential increase of telemedicine and our mobile lab solution, our location counts will be lower, but the quality of the real estate will be more important than ever,” said Jason Madsen, CEO of Atlanta-based Ascend Medical. “We need high-profile class-A sites with convenient parking for our multi-specialty hub centers to serve our patient base.”