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8 September 2023

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Private healthcare reaches new heights with Healthcode

2023 is on track to be a record year for private healthcare according to Healthcode which forecasts it will clear more than 10million invoices to insurers on behalf of hospitals, practitioners, practices and clinics. The official clearing organisation for the private healthcare sector has cleared nearly 20% more invoices by the end of July, compared with the same point in 2022.

The total value of invoices cleared up to July 2023 is approximately £2.5billion, funds that have helped private sector providers grow their businesses, giving their patients, both private and NHS, the care they need.  

Healthcode released the data to coincide with its AGM in London on Thursday 7 September. Following the meeting, Healthcode hosted a special Showcase event to celebrate its achievements over the past 20 years and give stakeholders a glimpse of what’s in store over the next few years. 

Peter Connor, Healthcode’s Managing Director, commented: “After achieving great things in 2022, private healthcare providers are treating more insured patients than ever this year and we’re seeing year on year growth across every region, care setting and specialty.

“I’m proud that Healthcode’s technology is helping to power the sector forward on several fronts at a time when health provision is a national priority. That includes the clearing technology that rapidly clears insurer invoices so providers can realise income of £1bn each Quarter; our Secure Messaging service which industry professionals use to send more than 350,000 electronic messages each year, sharing confidential information in support of patient care; and The PPR which now has more than 38,000 registered practitioners and has become the information hub for the sector, driving collaboration and streamlining the practising privileges process.  

“Ultimately, Healthcode succeeds when we’re aligned to the needs of our stakeholders and our new ICE integrated channel exchange is yet another example, finally making real-time appointment booking a reality for the private healthcare sector.”

Headlines from Healthcode’s latest analysis of insurer invoice activity which covers January to July 2023:

Episode setting

  • Between January and July 2023, the averaged year-on-year growth in non-hospital billing volumes was 27%, while for hospital billing volumes it was 13%.
  • Between January and July 2023, the averaged year-on-year growth was 13% for outpatients and 16% for admitted patients. This reflects the different rate of recovery for admitted care which lagged behind outpatient episodes after the pandemic. 

Medical specialty

  • Orthopaedics & trauma was the largest hospital specialty with an insured bill volume of 53K in July 2023, up 17% on the same month in 2022. Over the seven months to July 2023, the averaged year-on-year increase was 11%.
  • Radiology was second (40K in July, up by 13% on 2022). The averaged year-on-year increase was 15% over the seven months to July.
  • Obstetrics & gynaecology saw the largest year-on-year growth in billing volumes in July 2023 (32%) with cardiology only slightly behind on 31%. Over the seven months to July 2023, both specialties saw averaged year-on-year growth of 23%.  

Countries and regions

  • Hospital billing volumes were up across all UK countries in July 2023 compared with July 2022. Wales achieved year-on-year growth of 26% while the equivalent year-on-year growth in England was 19%. Scotland and Northern Ireland were 9% and 5% respectively.
  • All the English regions saw year-on-year growth of more than 15% in July 2023. The North East grew by 30% while Yorkshire & Humber grew by 25%. In London, year-on-year growth in July 2023 was 19% with the capital accounting for most private healthcare practice.

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