Update 14 June 2018

After the very warm days in May it is now a more typical summer here in the Netherlands with rain and wind. In this latest update on private healthcare in the Netherlands we cover:

  • Orpea purchase of WoonZorgNet is official. Why has Orpea waited for such a long time in announcing this deal?
  • Research company estimates that the Netherlands will require 82.000 more nursing home beds. Who will develop the required new capacity?
  • Co-payments for home-care services standardized and limited to €17,50 per four weeks. Will this make the home care sector more attractive?
  • In our snapshot we give an overview of Pro Senectute, a different elderly care organization.

Orpea purchase of WoonZorgNet is official

A few days ago, Orpea sent out a press release stating that they have acquired WoonZorgNet. According to the press release WoonZorgNet offers sheltered housing, daycare and outpatient support for patients with mental health issues or psychiatric illnesses and operates seven facilities with 162 beds.

The timing of the press release is strange as the deal was made in the summer of 2017 (and the company was highlighted in the update of 27 July 2017). Why has Orpea waited with announcing this deal? One theory is that it did not want the sellers of Dagelijks Leven (elderly care chain which it acquired a few weeks ago) to know that it was already present in the Dutch market.

Research company estimates that 82.000 more nursing home beds are required in the Netherlands in the next twenty years

Abf Research is a Dutch company specializing in demographic analytics at a macro and micro level. In a recent report they show the results of their proprietary prognostics model Fortuna 2017. This model combines healthcare and demographic data to show that the Netherlands will need will require 82.000 additional nursing home beds between now and 2040. In addition, there will also be a need for 13.000 assisted living apartments.

How will this new capacity be realized given the sorry financial state of the incumbent Dutch nursing home organizations? An analysis we have carried out shows that the incumbent elderly care operator in 80% of the municipalities requiring 100 or more extra nursing home beds in the next ten years (i.e. at least one new location) are financially weak and will have difficulties in making the required investments. Will the new capacity have to come from international operators?

Co-payments for home care services standardized

Home care services for the elderly are in the Netherlands financed by the municipalities. Up until now, every municipality has decided its own co-payment schemes which were often high and dependent on income and assets. The Ministry of Health has recently decided that from 1 January 2019 co-payment are standardized and limited to €17,50 per four-week period.

This change means that home care services will become more affordable to large segments of the population. However, the sector is currently not very attractive, and overall attractiveness will depend on the tariffs that are paid by the municipalities.

Snapshot of a Dutch private sector healthcare operator: Pro Senectute

Pro Senectute was established in 1922 and is organized as an association with individual members. This means that everybody who is interested in becoming a client, first needs to become a member of the association. Pro Senectute believes strongly in the advantages of clients having a similar background. This means that membership is restricted to people with a certain level of education and cultural interests.

Pro Senectute currently has 10 locations with 560 apartments. Pro Senectute locations are split into locations for assisted living (no requirements for indications but provision of home-care type services) and nursing homes. The cost of living at Pro Senectute varies per location and depends on the size of the apartment and the services which are used and range between €1.000 - €2.700 per month (excluding healthcare-related costs).