Digital therapeutics (DTx) is regarded as a digital health category that is defined by the Digital Therapeutics Alliance as the products that adequately deliver the evidence-based therapeutic interventions to the patients who are driven by the high-quality software programs for the prevention, management, or treatment of a medical disease or disorder. In the year 2020, the world Digital Therapeutics Market accounted for USD 2.3 billion and is predicted to reach a mammoth amount of nearly USD 35.78 billion by 2030, with a pertinent CAGR of 31.4 %.
With the healthcare sector becoming digital, the patients today are much more empowered than they were ever before. As a result, digital health solutions have indeed become the need of the hour for keeping up with a rising number of empowered patients who are participating in their own treatment decisions. Digital health encompasses the various platforms & systems that implement the technological solutions for the enhancement of healthcare delivery. Digital therapeutics (DTx) is regarded as one such category of digital health solutions that accurately provides evidence-based software-driven therapeutic interventions to prevent and manage a particular medical disorder or disease. This review solely aims to provide a comprehensive overview of the DTx, its various functions & applications in the healthcare sector & its associated regulatory aspects, among others.
Drug development is regarded as a lengthy, highly-risky & expensive venture in today’s world. In spite of the massive level of investments by the worldwide players, the overall R&D productivity in the pharmaceutical & life sciences sector has substantially decreased all across the globe over the past few years.
Working principles of Digital Therapeutics (DTx)
DTx is regarded as a new category of applications that help in the treatment of diseases that change in remote monitoring and patient behaviour to yield enhanced & long-term health outcomes. These applications are obvious to achieve some of the most favourable outcomes.
For example, they can encourage the patients to adhere to a particular diet & exercise routine or drug regimens. The main difference between the DTx & wellness applications is that the DTx applications are developed to target some specific disease conditions, especially major chronic diseases like diabetes, pulmonary diseases like COPD, & cardiovascular conditions such as hypertension.
Services available under DTx either compliment & add to the high value of the traditional healthcare delivery system or possess the potential of significantly replacing the existing system. Examples of the former inculcate mobile applications & devices that help the patients with adequate reminders for time & dosage of medication, thereby modifying their medication adherence. Examples of the latter are the suitable platforms that substitute medications with that the sensory stimuli that are delivered via an application on the particular mobile device.
DTx adequately targets those conditions that are addressed poorly by the healthcare system, along with neurological disorders or chronic diseases. Evidence is also showing the overall value of DTx in the treatment of substance addiction. Recently, USFDA approved a mobile application that will help to treat marijuana, alcohol, & cocaine addiction, thereby referring to the findings of the clinical trials that showed the abstinence in almost 40% of patients using a DTx application for nearly about three months, as compared with 17.6% of those patients who used standard therapy alone. Besides that, the DTx can often deliver some of the most relatively cost-effective treatments in comparison with the traditional therapy, thus reducing the demands on clinicians’ time.