Saudi Arabia will need an additional 20,000 hospital beds to meet demand

Saudi healthcare sector set for increased growth and investment from private sector
By Bernd Debusmann Jr
Tue 29 May 2018 10:26 AM

Rising demand for healthcare and government initiatives designed to increase private sector participation in Saudi Arabia are paving the way for expansion and investment opportunities in the industry, according to a new report by Knight Frank.

In the report, Knight Frank noted that key drivers include a demographic shift – in which 44 percent of Saudis will be over 40 in 2035 – as well as expanded health insurance coverage, which now covers 11 million beneficiaries across the country.

“Over the next decade, population dynamics are forecast to shift, with a significant increase in the population over 40,” said senior healthcare manager Dr. Gireesh Kumar.

“This indicates an expected increase in the burden of lifestyle diseases and associated go-morbidities which would trigger an upsurge in demand for highly specialised medical and surgical care in the kingdom.”

Additionally, the report forecasts a demand gap due to the facilities requirements of the expanding population, which creates a strong business case for the development of additional medical facilities.

Statistics show that, based on current density, Saudi Arabia will require an additional 20,000 hospital beds to meet population growth by 2035.

The report notes that the kingdom’s National Transformation Plan and privatization programme have named the healthcare sector as an important target for privatization and growth, opening the door to further investment by existing operators or new entrants.

“Healthcare is undergoing a transformation phase. A long term view and thorough research must be taken while investing in the sector to ensure investments match current and forecasted demand,” said Shehzad Jamal, education and healthcare partner at Knight Frank.

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Last Updated: Tue 29 May 2018 11:09 AM GST

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