ICAP: Greek private health services market continue shrinking

Greece’s private health services market size shrank for the fourth successive year in 2016, a survey by ICAP Group SA on “Private Health Services” said.

In recent years, the income of private health service providers were negatively impacted by the imposition of the Law 4172/2013 (clawback / rebate mechanism), whereby the sector were forced to a “haircut” of their claims for their services provided to insured people of EOPYY.

Constantine Paleologos, Senior Consultant Sector Studies, who edited this study, said that the total market for private health services (in value) is estimated to have decreased by 2% in 2016 compared with 2015. In particular, a decrease of 3% recorded in the total revenue of diagnostic centers and dialysis centers. The market of obstetric – gynecological clinics is estimated to have increased by approximately 2.5%, while the clinics market decreased by approximately 2.5%. Losses recorded for the subcategory of neuropsychiatric clinics, the market size of which decreased by around 8% in the period 2016/15.

Helen Demertzi, Senior Manager Finance ICAP Group study, indicates that clinics accounted for the largest share of the total market of private health services, with a market share estimated at around 60% for 2016. The obstetric clinics accounted for nearly 16% of total revenues while the remaining 24% shared by private diagnostic centers – dialysis centers. In particular, in the area of ​​clinics, general clinics represent a share of 80%, neuropsychiatric clinics share of 7%, clinical share of 8% recovery and the remaining share specific, mixed and other clinical categories.

Among the strong points of the industry are the activity of large and well-organized business groups with long experience, the trend of gradual aging of the population, the development of medical science and of course the chronic weaknesses of the public health system.

The weak points included the relatively strict regulatory framework in relation to the establishment of new clinics. Opportunities for the industry are among other things, the expansion of existing companies in foreign markets, the development of medical tourism, the contracts with private insurance companies, as well as the specialization in sectors where growth potential.

As threat for the industry were noted a prolonged period of economic recession the country, the public sector liquidity problems, the tight bank credit and of course the state measures on reduction of health costs.

The survey analyzed financial analysis of sector companies based on 17 selected ratios for the five years from 2011 to 2015. Also, a consolidated balance sheet (for the years 2014 and 2015) based on a representative sample of 39 enterprises operating private clinics, 11 operators maternity clinics and 26 diagnostic centers operators.

Specifically, the total assets of private clinics showed a decrease of 3.1% in 2015 compared to 2014, the maternity clinics was flat (a marginal increase of 0.2%), and the diagnostic centers – dialysis centers decreased by 7.7%.

Total revenues of private clinical sample displayed a marginal increase of 1.3%, while revenues of maternity clinics are increased by 4.2%. Regarding the diagnostic centers and dialysis centers, their total income did not change significantly (marginal decrease of 0.2%).

The final net result but the general and maternity clinics remained loss-making in 2015, but the amount of damage was limited slightly. Of the 39 companies in the sample of general clinics, only 10 showed profits in 2015.