U + ME = D2C (WITH GLPs)

For the past two years, the percentage of digital health startups selling direct-to-consumer (D2C) has dropped—but 2024 might turn the tides back toward D2C. Over the past several days, drugmaker Eli Lilly launched LillyDirect, an initiative with digital health startups to connect consumers to in-person providers or virtual clinics for obesity, diabetes, and migraine care. Similarly, Mayo Clinic announced The Mayo Clinic Diet Medical Weight Loss Rx, a weight loss telemedicine service utilizing clinicians from digital health startup Amwell.

Consumers are increasingly familiar with virtual prescribing: 41% of respondents in our 2022 Consumer Adoption Survey reported that they received a prescription from a virtual visit or had medication delivered to their home. With consumer demand for obesity medications through the roof, the time is ripe for companies like Lilly and Mayo to move into D2C territory historically dominated by tele-prescribing startups—and it makes sense they’re partnering with digital health players to do so. We’ll keep tracking incumbent moves in this space to see if the momentum extends beyond obesity, and if this trend reinvigorates D2C as a digital health strategy overall.


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