Shares of Teladoc Health (NYSE:TDOC) popped today, closing out the session with 12% gains, as a historic $2 trillion stimulus bill continues to make its way through Congress. Demand for Teladoc's services has soared amid the ongoing COVID-19 crisis as patients seek remote help.
The Senate yesterday passed the massive package that is designed to mitigate many of the economic impacts of the outbreak, offering various forms of bailouts to several industries that have been decimated by the virus. The bill currently contains provisions that would increase funding for telehealth services -- like those Teladoc offers -- by an estimated $200 million, according to Politico.
The coronavirus is so infectious that many patients don't want to go to a doctor's office because it may increase the risk of coming into contact with another infected person. As a result, consumers have been increasingly turning to telehealth services for remote diagnosis and guidance. Many states only conduct COVID-19 tests with a doctor's order.
On the earnings call last month, CEO Jason Gorevic acknowledged that Teladoc was working to meet surging demand for its telehealth services. The chief executive was encouraged by recent statements from public health officials about the benefits of telehealth, but warned it was too early to "quantify the impact that the outbreak could have on our business."
The House is expected to vote on the bill on Friday, and if passed, it would move on to President Trump to sign.