European private healthcare sector’s 2018 growth in one chart

How did 260 of Europe’s biggest private healthcare service providers fare financially in 2018? Noticeable country and sector-trends emerge in this week’s infographic.

The graphics below plot 2018 revenue (bubble size) and growth (height of the bubble on y-axis) for the 260 European operators who disclose financial figures.

See the companies sorted by sector below. Hospitals are in a very noticeable rut, with the vast majority of the 50-odd operators in the chart hovering in the low single digits – slightly above the dotted 0% line. But few have actually shrunk which demonstrates the stability of the sector, compared with services which may be dependent on large contracts that can be won or lost, like in domiciliary care and medicalised homecare.

Labs (pink, middle), imaging (black, next to it) and outpatient (purple, right) are also doing well, demonstrating the trends we know about: labs are consolidating, imaging growing as payors recognise its value, and outpatient off corporate and private pay funding, as well as the general shift of less complex care out of the hospital.

Sorting the data by countries is also interesting. The UK’s tough health and care markets mean a number of operators are seeing negative growth. But many are also doing just fine, indicating a highly-competitive market. Sweden is another market where many companies’ revenues are shrinking, possibly related to a tough climate around private healthcare and insourcing by public authorities. Note that the UK is over-represented in this graph due to the availability of data.

Elsewhere it’s a more rosy picture. Those in Germany and France, where the private sector is much more ingrained into the healthcare system, are doing better with far fewer below the 0% line; as are those in Finland, Spain and even Russia, as private pay growth boosts the sector. The highly acquisitive internationals (the large grey bubbles towards the right) have also performed strongly. (Currencies are not accounted for but neither the pound nor the ruble has shifted significantly in the last 12 months.)

We would welcome your thoughts on this story. Email your views to Cameron Murray or call 0207 183 3779.