Gen Z on the Future of Healthcare

From virtual visits to mental wellness and wearables, Gen Z could reinvent healthcare.

What’s happening: A study from Able Partners and Springbank Collective examined Gen Z’s take on the existing healthcare system. The result? The generation’s experience and preferences are radically different than generations past — even those of millennials.

Top of Mind

Leaning into holistic wellness and shedding long-held stigmas, the conversation around mental health has become part of Gen Zers’ identity.

  • Only 45% feel they have “very good” mental health, while 46% report burnout in the workplace.
  • 53% have a behavioral health condition, while 75% report anxiety and depression.
  • 68% feel very or somewhat comfortable talking about their mental health, with 42% admitting to regular 1:1 therapy.

Nonnegotiable. By 2030, Gen Z will make up 30% of the workforce and command $2T in earnings. While they’re willing to pay out of pocket for well-being, 63% expect employers to offer mental health benefits, second only to a 401K program.

Moving forward, companies will need to revamp employee wellness and benefits for the younger generation, because how Gen Z seeks and accesses care is far from traditional.

TikTok Doc

Only 55% of Gen Z have a PCP. Instead, they’re piecing together care options themselves.

  • 60% report being impacted by influencers on making healthcare decisions.
  • Seeking holistic treatments, 50% use CBD/cannabis daily, 50% use a meditation app, and 30% want to explore functional medicine.
  • 58% use a health tracker, and 62% track at least three health metrics through wearables, apps, or at-home tests.

Zoomers don’t Zoom. Over 55% are on their phone for five hours per day or more, but that doesn’t make them telehealth converts.

For those who do see a doctor, only 20% prefer video visits vs. 62% that prefer in-person, and only a third have used a healthcare-affiliated app.

Yet, a combined 69% indicated phone calls and texts were also a preferred method of communication — meaning, like the future of fitness, convenience is key.

Takeaway: Gen Z is taking a hybrid approach to improving well-being — as comfortable sitting in a doctor’s waiting room as they are getting advice from TikTok. That means—from healthcare to mental wellness to fitness—brands will need to rethink their rigid ways.

Breaking down the business of fitness and wellness

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