- Independent hospital operator Spire Healthcare reported a recovery in profit and revenue in the six months to 30 June but saw earnings fall short of 2019 levels thanks to Covid costs.

Revenue was up 13.5% on 2019 and 38.9% on 2020 as the company swung to a pre-tax profit of £4.7 million compared with a loss of £231.1 million in 2020.

However, EBITDA (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation) was £800,000 below 2019 levels at £96 million with Covid-19 specific costs of at least £16 million.

Admissions in July and August were impacted by an increased prevalence of Covid-19 in the UK.

Whilst revenues remained in growth, last minute cancellations due to patients, colleagues and Consultants being required to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace have led to higher labour costs, which impacted EBITDA by c. £4 million per month on average in July and August.

CEO Justin Ash commented: 'We are of course experiencing material additional costs arising from the complexities of delivering safe care in a COVID-secure environment, which will continue as long as COVID case numbers remain high in the UK.

'However, we have successfully driven down the cost of COVID testing and our continued investment in digital systems and efficient pathways will deliver significant cost savings in 2022 and beyond.

'The long-term prospects for the healthcare sector are positive and we stand ready to play our part in addressing waiting lists and supporting the UK's recovery from the pandemic.'

Story provided by