Medtech vs Healthtech

Humans love (especially me) to organise, to label, to put things in boxes, categories. This can be bad (politics) but also can be practical and useful (employment sectors).

In a former life, medical versus healthcare was fairly clear, at least in my own head.

Medical covered anything “hands-on” clinical. Healthcare covered a broader scope with allied health and more holistic methods and sub-types thrown in.

In the health technology world (or is it “digital health”?), the lines can become thinner and greyer. Over the course of researching, writing and covering this space, I have grappled with what box a startup or service should sit in, and will be led by their own definition (if they know themselves).

After all the deliberation I have settled on two primary categories, Medtech and Healthtech.

Before reading up on official and unofficial definitions I had decided Medtech, for want of a more sophisticated description, the more complex stuff. Our very own Australian-founded MedTech Accelerator describes it more eloquently:

“We define MedTech as devices, diagnostics, bionics, instrumentation, digital health and services that are within a regulated path to market.”

This completely makes sense to me at least, and then leaves most other innovations, and those in the “wellness” demographic, in the Healthtech bucket. seems to agree?:

“The definition of Health Tech, or digital health, is the use of technology (databases, applications, mobiles, wearables) to improve the delivery, payment, and/or consumption of care, with the ability to increase the development and commercialization of medicinal products.”

And finally, this gem on Quora brings together the debate nicely:

“HealthTech is about Preventive or Analytic systems. Like Fitness trackers, Diet planners n stuff.

MedTech is more about Cure based systems, used in hospitals. Like aggregation of information from various Systems used in Hospital, patient parameter management system.”

What do you think?