KPJ Healthcare to take on more non-Covid patients from govt hospitals

This will ease the healthcare system capacity as Covid-19 daily infections continue to increase

by ASILA JALIL / pic by BERNAMA

KPJ Healthcare Bhd is ramping up its decanting of non-Covid-19 patients from government hospitals to ease capacity as Covid-19 daily infections continue to soar.

The company said it has seen an intake of more than 1,000 patients per month from government hospitals over the last few months, with services and procedures provided to the Health Ministry based on a cost recovery formula to ensure affordability.

It also clocks in at almost 15,000 vaccinations daily which makes it the largest private healthcare provider supporting the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme with a total of 544,711 doses of vaccines being administered to date.

“As daily infections began to rise in the second quarter of 2021 (2Q21), the importance of achieving a faster rollout of Covid-19 vaccines became increasingly apparent. To date, we have 25 vaccination centres (PPVs) registered with ProtectHealth Corp Sdn Bhd.

“This includes the mega PPVs in Kuala Lumpur and Johor Baru, as well as one industry PPV which provides vaccinations to industries located in Kuching,” it said in a statement yesterday.

Its net profit dropped 45% in 2Q21 to RM6.96 million from RM12.66 million in 2Q20 due to increasing costs of operating under the new normal.

The company said it recorded a total of 758,629 patients in the quarter under review, up by 36% compared to 556,042 patients in 2Q20.

The bed occupancy rate (BOR) rose seven percentage points to 41% in 2Q21 against 34% in 2Q20.

Its revenue rose 33% year-on-year (YoY) to RM632.83 million in the quarter from RM475.85 million a year ago due to better operational performance aided by a less stringent Movement Control Order (MCO) 3.0 which was effective in 2Q21.

“The MCO 1.0 instituted in March 2020 had a more severe impact on hospital operations in 2Q20, with BOR reaching a post-pandemic low of 25% in April 2020,” it said.

The increase in operating costs under the new normal also saw its pre-tax profit decline by 25% alongside high provision reversal in 2020, coupled with benefits received from the Prihatin economic stimulus package and Penjana economic recovery plan.

For its first half of the year (1H21), KPJ Healthcare posted a net profit of RM19.93 million, down 61.1% YoY from RM51.19 million in 1H20.

Revenue for the period rose 8.5% YoY to RM1.24 billion in 1H21 from RM1.14 billion in 1H20 due to an increase in hospital activities and a higher number of patients.

KPJ Healthcare recorded a total of 1.5 million patients in 1H21 compared to 1.4 million patients in 1H20.

Its president and MD Ahmad Shahizam Mohd Shariff said the group will continue to play a leading role in supporting national economic recovery efforts and work with its partners to ensure optimum services are delivered throughout the challenging period.

“We have been an integral part of the country’s response to the Covid-19 pandemic and remain committed to doing so today.

This includes decanting of non-Covid-19 patients to private hospitals to ease pressure on the public healthcare system, followed by our active management of selected Covid-19 cases in KPJ hospitals.

“Furthermore, we have also been deploying our trained nurses to some of the government hospitals in need,” he said.

For 2H21, the group will be focusing on adopting virtual health and other digital innovations as the healthcare system pivots to a more digitised environment.