Monday , November 18 2019
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Healthcare stocks edge higher on the bourses

The rating agency ICRA in its latest report has said that Indian healthcare sector is on a recovery path after past two years of underperformance that was mainly due to the cap on prices of stents and knee implants by the National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA), adverse impact of rollout of Goods and Services Tax (GST) on profitability and strict regulatory action taken by multiple states.

Fortis Healthcare is currently trading at Rs. 136.00, up by 5.45 points or 4.17% from its previous closing of Rs. 130.55 on the BSE. The scrip opened at Rs. 134.30 and has touched a high and low of Rs. 136.75 and Rs. 133.25 respectively. So far 205145 shares were traded on the counter.

Apollo Hospitals Enterprise is currently trading at Rs. 1484.70, up by 32.50 points or 2.24% from its previous closing of Rs. 1452.20 on the BSE. The scrip opened at Rs. 1460.20 and has touched a high and low of Rs. 1487.35 and Rs. 1460.20 respectively. So far 12352 shares were traded on the counter.

Indraprastha Medical Corporation is currently trading at Rs. 36.50, up by 0.55 points or 1.53% from its previous closing of Rs. 35.95 on the BSE. The scrip opened at Rs. 36.50 and has touched a high and low of Rs. 36.50 and Rs. 36.50 respectively. So far 10 shares were traded on the counter.

According to the report, the strong performance of the sector is further supported by the average revenue per operating bed (ARPOB) which grew at a healthy 9 percent in Q1 FY20 against 3 percent in FY18 and 6 percent in FY19. It also noted that the growth in the ARPOB in Q1 FY20 is much higher than the six-year compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of around 6 percent, on account of the hike in tariffs undertaken.

Nonetheless, ICRA said the regulatory environment continues to be the overarching challenge for the hospital sector with the wide-ranging regulatory restrictions from multiple authorities suppressing their margins. But, it stated that structurally, in the long term, underlying fundamentals such as the significant shortage of beds in the country and the increase in the disease burden and an ageing demographic profile continue to favour the sector.