Private hospital's profits hit by drop-off in health insurance
THE decline in the number of people covered by private health insurance last year contributed to a 22pc decline in pre-tax profits at the west of Ireland's largest private hospital.
New figures show that pre-tax profits fell by more than one-fifth to €12.9m. Revenues at Galway Clinic operator Galway Clinic Doughiska declined marginally to €86.1m.
The clinic, which is part-owned by beef baron Larry Goodman, said "2012 was a challenging year for the Galway Clinic".
"The impact of continued price decreases over the past few years, reduced private health insurance membership and the scaling back of the National Treatment Purchase fund has impacted on profitability," the directors added.
The clinic treated 66,334 patients last year compared with 67,693 in 2011. The numbers employed increased from 541 to 554.
Chief executive and founding director Jimmy Sheehan also established the Blackrock Clinic in Dublin.
The clinic's cash balance last year increased to €24m with its accumulated profits totalling €50.4m.
The hospital has yet to pay a dividend to shareholders and has retained all profits in the business to date.
The figures show that staff costs at the clinic last year rose 2.7pc to €28.96m.