Shares of Teladoc Health (NYSE:TDOC) rose 2% in morning trading Tuesday as fear over rising COVID-19 cases from new variants has investors believing there will be renewed demand for remote medical care.
Although the seven-day average of new COVID cases is about where it was a year ago and well below its peak, they’re also about three times greater than they were just one month ago as the delta variant of the coronavirus, as well as several other variants, have caused cases to spike.
That has the markets concerned that there could be new lockdowns, new mask mandates, and other restrictions on freedoms that people were only just starting to enjoy again. The stock market plunged over 700 points yesterday as a result.
Teladoc’s business thrived during the pandemic as office visits became high-risk ventures for spreading or catching the virus. The company’s technology enabled it to enjoy a 156% increase in virtual visits last year, hitting 8.8 million in the U.S., and rising 71% to 1.7 million internationally.
Even with a reopened economy, Teladoc’s first-quarter visits were up 69% in the U.S. And there was a good chance they would stay elevated even if the pandemic remained less widespread, since people who had used the technology might have found it more convenient than a physical visit.
As the world braces on the edge of hysteria for new rounds of sequestration, Teladoc’s technology is at least one area that could shine, making the healthcare stock an attractive investment.
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