15 January 2009

Paid medicine has not been affected by the crisis

Despite the financial crisis, the growth rate in the paid medical services market will not slow down, SYNOPSIS experts said. According to the company's analysts, the paid medical services market remains attractive for investment even in the conditions of the financial crisis. The development of the segment is facilitated by the reduction of the shadow sector of medical services and the unsatisfactory quality of free medical care. At the current growth rates, according to experts, the market of paid medical services in the Russian Federation may reach 450 billion rubles by 2011.

The increased development of paid medical services is taking place in the largest cities. In Moscow, 4% of Moscow residents own a voluntary medical insurance policy (VMI), but the volume of contributions on them in 2006 amounted to about 23 billion rubles. The volume of the VMI market in Russia in 2007 is estimated by experts at 68.8 billion rubles.

According to the DISCOVERY Research Group agency, the growth rate of the VMI market over the past five years is 25-30%. While the vast majority of corporate contracts are listed in the VMI sector, they make up 90% of the portfolio of insurance companies. The share of individual customers is only 5-10%.

In parallel, about 40% of Moscow residents made unofficial payments to doctors in one form or another. Experts estimated the shadow turnover in state clinics at about 7 billion rubles a year.

The volume of the Moscow market of paid medical services (excluding the shadow sector, dentistry and private practitioners) in 2006 amounted to 28.8 million rubles, while the same figure in 2003 was equal to 9.6 million rubles. The commercial medicine market is mainly represented by services in the field of dentistry, gynecology, urology, diagnostics and cosmetology. A small percentage are clinics with a wide range of services (there are few such in Russia).

According to experts, the Russian market of paid medical services in the coming years will grow by 12% per year, and in Moscow the increase may be 30%. The development of the paid medical services market is being slowed down today by state healthcare institutions that offer paid services to customers at dumping prices. Another very acute problem of the development of the paid medical services industry is the high level of initial investment required to open a paid medicine clinic.

According to experts, instead of scattered medical offices in many Russian cities, five or six large multidisciplinary medical centers may appear in the near future. One of the latest trends in the industry is the development of public-private partnerships.

Portal "Eternal youth" www.vechnayamolodost.ru15.01.2009

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