Telemedicine Is One Contributor to This Healthcare ETF's Story

The coronavirus is pushing telemedicine to the forefront of healthcare, but not all ETFs are adequately levered to this theme. The Principal Healthcare Innovators Index ETF (Nasdaq: BTEC), does however, feature some telemedicine exposure.

BTEC tracks the Nasdaq U.S. Healthcare Innovators Index, which is designed to provide exposure to early-stage small-capitalization healthcare companies. These are primarily biotechnology and life science, which have the potential to create cures for cancer, develop new medical technologies, or spearhead other medical advances.

High-flying Teledoc Health (NASDAQ: TDOC) is a top 10 holding in BTEC and another example of the ETF’s leverage to themes emerging from the coronavirus.

BTEC, which turns four years old in August, “seeks to tap into the increasing demand for healthcare solutions as demographic trends have driven healthcare spending to more than double in the last 20 years,” according to Principal.

Good Timing For BTEC

With telemedicine still in its nascent stages, there’s ample runway for growth and that could underscore the already compelling long-term thesis for BTEC.

“With Americans wary of hospitals and clinics as potential vectors of infectious disease, more are starting to appreciate telemedicine and communicating with their health-care providers online,” according to CNBC.

Since the coronavirus outbreak, health care technology has come to the fore with various innovations to combat the virus. This can only help fuel health care technology exchange-traded funds (ETFs) moving forward from preventative medicine to treatment.

Disruptive technology is not relegated to certain sectors as it will permeate into all industries in some form or fashion. For example, augmented reality is technology comprised of digital images superimposed over the real world, and its use is primed to drive industry growth–industries like real estate and manufacturing are already putting the technology to use in a variety of ways.

Importantly, BTEC is a passive fund with an active index structure, one that removes large-cap and less liquid companies. Conversely, BTEC focuses on research and development-focused firms that have the potential to deliver legitimate disruption.

“Online healthcare services and telemedicine will continue to become more prevalent and essential. We see the potential for continued greater use of digital technologies to benefit patients and result in fewer visits to the clinic,” said Jefferies strategist Simon Powell in a recent note to clients.

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The opinions and forecasts expressed herein are solely those of Tom Lydon, and may not actually come to pass. Information on this site should not be used or construed as an offer to sell, a solicitation of an offer to buy, or a recommendation for any product.