Analysts predict surge from private insurance

LaingBuisson private acute healthcare conference

By Robin Stride

Independent practitioners outside of London can expect a continuing surge in both privately insured and self-pay patients, according to market analysts.

LaingBuisson forecasts hospital revenue from private medical insurance will rise 10% next year and 9% in 2025, with a corresponding increase in self-pay of 4% and 3% over the next two years.

Revenues from the NHS are set to increase by 7% in 2024 and 6% the year after, it believes.

Private doctors in central London could fare even better, with hospital revenues there from insured patients experiencing rises of 12% and 10% in the next couple of years and self-pay rising by 4% and 3% over the same period.

Embassy work in the capital is expected to go up even more, giving 15% and 13% rises in hospital revenues in 2024 and 2025.

All this has to be considered against some outstanding issues for the sector. 

Ted Townsend

LaingBuisson’s conference director Ted Townsend listed potential threats as consumer confidence, NHS waiting lists (diagnostics, decision to admit and GP appointments), UK politics and a 2024 general election and inflation.

Other influencing factors were the tight labour market, energy and other supply costs, other external shocks involving concerning situations abroad and the threat of Covid.

Mr Townsend asked his audience for their views on his forecasts and from around 100 responses they indicated:

Outside London:

Private medical insurance: about right 63%, optimistic 28%, pessimistic 8%.

Self-pay: about right 49%,

optimistic 26%, pessimistic 25%.

NHS – about right 52%, optimistic 24%, pessimistic 25%.

Inside London:

Private medical insurance: about right 58%, optimistic 27%, pessimistic 15%.

Self-pay: about right 47%,

optimistic 20%, pessimistic 33%.

Embassy: about right 42%, optimistic 51%, pessimistic 8%.

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