Chai Patel, former Ugandan refugee, medical doctor, adviser to the Blair government and, after selling his stake in British-based nursing home group HC-One two years ago, serial entrepreneur is one of the more colourful characters in the normally staid world of British adult social care. With 25 years of experience in the market, he's also well-placed to comment on its current plight. In this wide-ranging interview, he gives Healthcare Europa his assessment of the industry's health and reveals details of HC-One's future strategy.
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Insight & Interviews
Czech healthcare provider Agel, which owns 36 hospitals across Central Europe, added seven facilities to its network last year - and more in the pipeline for 2017. We speak to its new CEO, Milan Leckeši.
January 23, 2017
The Swedish dental cooperative is losing dentists and revenue, Healthcare Europa has learned from speaking to the group itself and a former executive. But does that mean its model is doomed - or is it merely getting rid of some dead wood?
January 18, 2017
The health and social care group, Pihlajalinna, is the biggest (and arguably hardest to pronounce) name in Finnish outsourcing. It opened its first joint venture with Jämsä in 2010 and now receives 55% of its sales through this model. But the Finnish Sote reform, which will totally reshape the market, is fast approaching. Still, Aktan claims that Pihlajalinna, a weak consumer brand, will adapt to freedom of choice and the end of outsourcing as he knows it.
January 18, 2017
Circle Rehabilitation Services, a joint venture between the UK private hospital group, Circle Health, and Vamed, an international hospital construction and management operator, is confident there is a mix of payors willing to fund inpatient rehab. The service should cost roughly two-thirds the price of an NHS acute bed per night, Circle’s chief medical officer, Dr Massoud Fouladi, told Healthcare Europa.
January 9, 2017
Medics24, a small Finnish telehealth start-up is trying to find volunteers in the medical profession to help both patients and aid workers affected by the conflict in Syria. We talk to Jussi Korhonen, director at Medics24 about the benefits of digital health and the group’s Syria initiative.
December 22, 2016
Boutique US advisory firm ABISA says it is working with Swiss clients for a healthcare deal in Eastern Europe. The expansion is likely to focus on medical tourism, telehealth and oncology - ABISA’s three main areas of expertise. We talk to founder Nick Hernandez.
December 14, 2016
By 2025 Penta Hospitals Group (PHG) owned by private equity house Penta Investments, plans to more than triple sales to over €1bn. But growth could be even faster, says its new CEO, Attila Vegh, a former boss of three large English NHS hospital trusts. The real ambition of the group, a merger of Svet Zdravia in Slovakia, the Polish chain EMC and Penta’s hospitals in Czech Republic, is even greater than the sales forecasts suggest. Much of the growth he says will come from working with the public sector. Vegh says that Penta wants to be “a disrupter, a company which introduces best practice and innovation,” thus persuading public payors to rethink their attitude to the private sector. So how do you do that in a region which is becoming increasingly statist and hostile to international capitalism?
December 6, 2016
Savvy insurers - big players like Generali, Germany's second largest primary insurance group, and Vitality in the UK, are moving into preventative health services – suggesting there's money to be saved here. Experts seem to agree within five years, wearable devices feeding information back to health insurance companies may become the norm rather than the exception – and insurers who don't change they way they operate could soon be left behind. One such expert is Jaakko Olkkonen, managing director of Finland-based mobile platform software company Wellmo. Olkkonen admits he has a vested interest in promoting wearable devices and apps which record key health information – like user activity, sleep patterns and heart rate – and feeding it back to insurers. He runs a digital platform designed to facilitate it, after all. But he says his predictions are accurate nonetheless.
December 6, 2016
With 18 facilities across Sweden, Finland and the UAE, GHP has pioneered “holistic” centres, each focused on specific conditions. So someone with a back problem can get physiotherapy, surgery, osteopathy and even psychiatry from one centre. GHP is also now managing four hospitals with 700 staff in the UAE. We talk to Öhman about GHP’s work with Swedish insurer Skandia which now pays the company on a per capita/quality basis for patients with orthopaedic and spine problems, conditions which make up nearly half of all pay-outs for insurers. We think this move to per capita payments for such conditions from some form of DRG payment is unique in Europe.