Investors would do well to take note of the health market inquiry’s provisional report on why medical aid prices keep rising while benefits decrease. The Competition Commission report may not bode well for the consumer but it notes that profits of the large hospital groups — Netcare, Mediclinic and Life Healthcare — are "consistent" and "sustained", with no chance of slowing down. Even better were the profits of administrator Discovery Health, "multiple" times those of competitors "with no sign of effective challenge from incumbent or new firms". The numbers illustrating Discovery Health’s dominance were erased from the report and instead pictures of a pair of scissors were drawn in their place. This is no doubt due to Discovery Health’s concerns about confidentiality of its data, said by inquiry director Clint Oellermann to be a reason for the delay in the provisional report’s release. The report, released after nine months of delays, highlights that there could be a substantial co...

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