‘COVID decade’ creates $10 trillion impact upon healthcare innovation investment


Healthcare technology investment in 2020 soared 47% to a new high of $51 billion* and figures show it will rocket to even greater heights.

Overall healthcare investment is tipped to pass $10 trillion** by 2022 on a 10-year upward trajectory, already being called the ‘COVID decade’ for investment into disruptive innovation supporting pandemic protection and preparedness.

The spin-off from this research is also creating opportunities to democratise and decentralise healthcare through early detection diagnostics and early intervention therapies, and precision medicine, all set to transform global health and human longevity.


Image; Medical concept in the field of nanotechnology. A nanobot studies or kills a cancer cell. 3 d illustration.

A further sign of where new investment is going came with the recent launch of a $300 million Pandemic Protection Sub-fund by the Luxembourg-based Vector Innovation Fund (VIF) focusing on this ‘new age’ healthtech, and preparation for the next global healthcare challenge.

The new fund forms part of $17 billion (source: Pitchbook) in venture funding for healthcare innovation in recent years related to infectious diseases.

Scottish Health Innovations reports how accelerating investment has advanced the healthcare sector 10 years in just six months, through new data-driven technologies and digitisation, while vaccines have developed at unprecedented speed; the research and rollout for the Pfizer and AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines were the fastest in history.

Testing has improved too; lateral flow tests (LFTs) from the world’s largest manufacturer, Innova Medical, are now 99.9% accurate yet take just 30 minutes to show results and help identify new variants and isolate asymptomatic carriers.

Using cutting edge nanotechnology these LFTs have been adopted by a world class UK testing and vaccine regime, now including a new national health agency UKHSA to protect against future health threats.

But far more is needed to avoid repetition of COVID-19’s devastation: 2.74m deaths to date, $5.6 trillion in global GDP lost, plus severe financial, health, and social impacts – mental health problems, unemployment, and poverty have all soared, while many people with life-threatening diseases have gone undiagnosed.

And the world is still alarmingly unprepared for another pandemic. COVID-19 was transmitted from animals, and scientists now know that two new ‘zoonotic’ viruses have done this every year for the last century, yet the Royal Society of Chemistry claims only 10 of 220 viruses known to infect humans have antiviral drugs available to combat them.

Against such odds, says the Executive Chair of Scottish Health Innovations, Graham Watson, healthcare innovation, rapid development, and early adoption must become routine in what he calls an “optimal investment ecosystem”.

This had been lacking according to leading medical journal, The Lancet, which reported that a pre-COVID assessment exposed a need for faster medical manufacturing and distribution during a possible pandemic, and commented: “A true, end-to-end R&D ecosystem must deliver needed products to people as rapidly as possible, and at scale in a globally fair and equitable fashion.”

Paul Sheedy, co-founder of the not-for-profit World Nano Foundation, argued strongly against any easing of investment into nanomedicines, and nano diagnostics towards better healthcare and pandemic protection:

“Nanomedicine investment alone grew 250% in the last five years, according to Pitchbook, while equity funding to digital health companies hit an all-time high last year, reaching $26.5 billion, but it has to be maintained if we are to avoid the human and economic devastation of another COVID.”


*https://www.pharmaceutical-technology.com/features/svv-qanda-healthcare-investment-2021/ – Sillicon Valley Bank Report.

**https://www.med-technews.com/medtech-insights/latest-medtech-insights/creating-the-optimum-investment-ecosystem-for-rapid-increase/ – Graham Watson – Scottish Health Solutions

For further information or to schedule an interview with World Nano Foundation/Vector Innovation Fund’s Paul Sheedy please contact Steve

The World Nano Foundation is a not-for-profit membership organisation with 75,000 subscribers and users in 40 countries working on international commercialisation of nanoscale technologies in 16 industry sectors and collaborates with a wide variety of partners, maximising support and funding bringing advanced technology to the world and commerce. This is supported by many industries and academic groups developing and creating a legacy for enabling technology innovation.

Vector Innovation Fund (VIF) is a Reserved Alternative Investment Fund (RAIF) specialising in support for technology companies able to transform and protect global markets, notably in global healthcare, enabling technology, sustainability, and longevity aligned to the UN’s SDG principles. VIF’s first sub-fund focuses on ‘Pandemic Protection’, and preparedness for future healthcare technology. This fund structure is domiciled in the world-renowned Luxembourg jurisdiction, and is only open to international accredited and professional investors, such as family offices, UHNW, private placement investors, pension funds, international banks, ESG investors and sovereign wealth funds. The General Partners have an excellent track record in industry, healthcare, technology and investment, with 21 exits and a total value creation of $2.4billion, including two successful IPOs.