Ripe for investment

Our ongoing series by Philip Housden reviews the 17 NHS trusts delivering private patient unit acute care services to the southern home counties of Kent, Sussex, Surrey, Hampshire and the Isle of Wight.

The pandemic has, of course, significantly changed the NHS PPU landscape in 2020, but the results this article and analysis is based on are those reported in trusts’ 2019-20 Annual Accounts, published last autumn. 

Analysis shows that total private patient incomes declined by 0.5% from £55.8m to £55.5m, representing 0.78% of these trusts’ total revenues, down from 1.01% in 2016-17. 

Results are ahead of the combined national average, excluding London, of 0.43% – including the capital, it is 1.04%. 

The Southern Home Counties region remains the highest grossing area outside London. However, performance in 2019-20 was patchy, even before Covid, with some trusts routinely choosing to move bed capacity away from PPUs to core NHS supply during the winter.  

Top trust by both overall earnings and percentage of turnover remains Frimley Health, which is based on its Parkside Suite brand.