PATSY DAVID: Prognosis for private hospitals is still uncertain
Covid-19 has far-reaching implications, but is first and foremost a global health pandemic. As news of the pandemic evolved, investors tried to assess the impact, looking for defensive stocks to mitigate investment portfolio risks, but also looking for investment opportunities in this catastrophe. Considering the potential demand for hospitalisation, it was reasonable to assume that private hospitals could fare well.
But this has not been the case. Recent results from hospital groups show pressure on occupancies and profitability since mid-March, when groups had to initially prepare for Covid-19 and then saw the subsequent decline in elective surgeries, and in medical and trauma cases since April.