Media releases

Hero award for boy who rescued his twin

Netcare 911 praises 11-year-old Luke for saving brother’s life

Thursday, November 9 2017

Very few 11-year-olds can say that they have saved a person’s life. Without the bravery and presence of mind of young Luke Bridle of Johannesburg, his twin brother David may not have survived his recent near-drowning experience.

“It is very rare to come across a child with the ability to act quickly and sensibly under such stressful and frightening circumstances,” says Craig Grindell, managing director of Netcare 911. “We were so impressed at how Luke helped to save his twin brother’s life that we decided to award him a special Netcare 911 bravery certificate.”

Photo:" Eleven-year-old Luke Bridle has been presented with a bravery certificate from Netcare 911 for helping to save his twin brother’s life. Netcare 911’s regional operations manager: Gauteng South West, Neill Visser (left), and Netcare 911 head of stakeholder relations, Carl de Montille (right), recently presented the certificate to Luke at his school, the Polly Shorts Academy in Weltevredenpark." 

According to the boys’ mother, Shandré Bridle, one afternoon in early September the twins were at home with their child minder who was giving David a bath.

“Our son David is disabled, and is also an epileptic. He and Luke have an extremely special bond and from a young age Luke has learned how he can help David when needed. My husband Brian was travelling at the time and I was driving home when I received a phone call that nearly made my heart stop,” she recalls.

The boys’ child minder had stepped out of the bathroom to fetch a towel when David suddenly had an epileptic seizure in the bathtub.

“His face went under the water and his body went rigid during the seizure, he fell forward and he was drowning in the bath. Thankfully, Luke immediately jumped into the bath to try to get David’s head out of the water. Our child minder came running in but it was very difficult for her and Luke to lift David out of the bath because of the seizure. It frightens me to think of it, but David could have drowned,” Shandré says.

The boys’ father, Brian, explains that, in a flash, Luke pulled the bath plug so that the water could drain out of the bath, however there was still concern that David could have breathed in water during the seizure. “Together the child minder and Luke managed to get him out of the bath and lay him over the woman’s knee so that the water could drain from his mouth. Luke helped to pummel his brother’s back to help expel any remaining fluid from his lungs.”

Luke pressed a panic button to alert the security company, then phoned their mother, who has first aid training, and over the phone she talked him through all the steps of how to check whether his twin was breathing and place him in the recovery position until emergency medical services provider Netcare 911 arrived.

The plucky Luke kept a cool head during the ordeal, and having established that his brother was breathing, did his best to keep David calm by talking to him and reassuring him until the paramedics arrived.

Netcare 911 advanced life support paramedic, Adrian King, who attended to the emergency says he was incredibly impressed at the way in which such a young child had responded to such an emergency situation.

“When we got there, Luke had placed his brother in the proper recovery position and kept checking that he was breathing. He did everything that should have been done, it was truly remarkable for a child of his age.”

King says that even when the paramedics were attending to David, Luke kept a watchful eye on his brother. “You could see he was very concerned. He kept asking if his brother was all right and we reassured him over and over again but he still kept asking ‘Have you checked he is breathing?’ It was very touching to see how devoted he is to his brother, and all his actions demonstrated the close bond they have.”

Fortunately, David made a full recovery after being admitted to Netcare Olivedale Hospital.

Luke was recently presented with a special bravery award from Netcare 911 at the boys’ school, the Polly Shorts Academy in Weltevreden Park. He and David both received Netcare 911 toy ambulance sets as a reminder of the heroic act of brotherly love.


Proud parents Brian and Shandré Bridle with their twin boys, Luke and David. Luke received a special Netcare 911 Hero Award from regional operations manager: Gauteng South West, Neill Visser (left), and Netcare 911 head of stakeholder relations, Carl de Montille (far right), for his bravery in saving his brother David (front) from drowning when he had an epileptic seizure in the bath.

“This little lifesaver is an exemplary example of the importance of keeping a cool head in an emergency situation, as this is the best way to assist someone in their time of need. This is easier said than done, but Netcare 911 is always on hand to offer emergency medical care and guidance in a crisis such as the one these twins faced so bravely,” Grindell concluded.


Issued by:           Martina Nicholson Associates (MNA) on behalf of Netcare 911
Contact:               Martina Nicholson, Graeme Swinney, Meggan Saville and Pieter Rossouw
Telephone:        (011) 469 3016
Email:         ,, or

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Do you know what to do if your child is choking

Familiarising yourself with what actions to take could be lifesaving

Thursday, November 9 2017

While choking in children is not something you can necessarily prevent, knowing what action to take during a choking incident could save a life.

This is according to Dr Hennie Smit, who recently attended to two-year-old Reuben Botha who was rushed to the emergency department at Netcare Krugersdorp Hospital after an object became lodged in his throat. “Fortunately for Reuben we were able to remove the object. He was then intubated and after two days he was discharged without having suffered any complications as a result of the choking. 

Photo: "Relieved parents Doret and Rian Botha taking their son Reuben home from Netcare Krugersdorp Hospital after his lifesaving treatment."

“Witnessing a child choking can be very distressing, causing many parents or caregivers to panic and in some instances completely freeze up if they don’t know what to do. That is why it is always a good idea to familiarise yourself with what actions to take should you be present during a choking incident.”

When advising on what to do when a young child is choking, David Stanton, Head: Clinical Leadership at Netcare 911, emphasises the importance of keeping calm and acting quickly. “Speed is of the essence in any choking situation. Being able to dislodge a blockage quickly greatly minimises the risk of further complications. However, never try to remove a foreign object unless you can actually see it, as you can run the risk of pushing it further into the airway.

“Depending on their age, the child may not be able to communicate that they are choking. Therefore, as soon as you notice a baby or younger child is unable to cry, cough or talk, it is likely that something is blocking their airway. They may even turn bright red or blue. It is important to keep calm and think rationally about what you will need to do to best assist the child,” he says.

Below is Netcare 911’s guide to assisting a child or baby that may be choking:

“Remember, it is essential that emergency medical services are summoned as soon as possible when someone is choking because if these steps do not work, choking can very quickly result in the person losing consciousness and suffocating. The sooner paramedics are called, the sooner they will arrive on scene and the greater the chance of a positive outcome,” notes Stanton.
What to do if a child is choking:

  • Firstly, try to encourage them to cough. Often the child will forget to try this, and forceful coughing may successfully expel the object
  • If this doesn’t work, do the Heimlich manoeuvre:
    • Stand or kneel behind the child.
    • Wrap your arms around them, and make a fist with one hand. Place your fist against the stomach, just above the belly button.
    • Place your other hand over your fist. Position your body up against the child.
    • Give a series of five hard forceful squeezes. You are trying to force the air out of the child, in an attempt to dislodge the object.
    • Check in the mouth to see if you can see the object.  If you can see it, pull it out.
  • If the thrusts don’t work, then do a series of back blows:
    • Have the child positioned with the head as low as possible.
    • Hit the child forcefully between the shoulder blades.  Repeat this five times. Keep repeating Heimlich thrusts and back blows until the object is released or check if you can see the object to pull it out.

What to do if a baby is choking:

  • Lay the infant face down along your arm, with the head lower than the rest of the body.
  • Give five hard slaps on the baby’s back. You should do this with the intention of shaking the object loose, so don’t be too gentle.
  • If the object doesn’t come out, turn the baby on his/her back. While supporting the entire baby, place two fingers on the middle of the chest.  Give up to five hard chest thrusts.
  • Keep repeating black slaps and chest thrusts until the object comes out, or keep checking in the mouth to see if you can see the object.  If you can see it, pull it out.

If the object does not come out in the first few seconds, Stanton says it is essential to call for professional help. “If at any time, the baby or child becomes unresponsive, place them gently onto the floor.  Begin cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). When giving breaths, take a moment to look in the mouth and see if you can see the object, and remove it if possible.  You will need to continue CPR until help arrives, ” he concludes.

Issued by:           Martina Nicholson Associates (MNA) on behalf of Netcare
Contact:               Martina Nicholson, Graeme Swinney, Meggan Saville or Pieter Rossouw
Telephone:        (011) 469 3016
Email:         ,,, or

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What to do in the event of a road accident

Emergency medical service provider offers helpful tips on how to save a life

Wednesday, July 26 2017

Road accidents are an unfortunate part of everyday life. Although most accidents happen in busy areas and on highways, there are some that may take place “off the beaten track”. This may well mean that the first person on the scene may not be a paramedic, but a regular road user just like you.

“Every motorist has a role to play in making South Africa’s roads safer and even though you can contribute greatly by following reasonable safety precautions and courteous driving behaviour, accidents do happen and it is important to be prepared for them,” says David Stanton, head of clinical leadership of Netcare 911.

“If you do come across a road accident, you may be able to make the difference between life and death to those involved. Remember, in an emergency, even the smallest action can make all the difference,” he adds.

What to do when you come across a road accident:

  • The very first thing you have to do is to ensure your own safety. Is it safe for you to be around the accident scene? Your safety is first priority and you cannot help anyone if you are injured or compromised in any way.
  • Stop in a safe place, with your hazard lights on and put a warning triangle at a fair distance back from the scene to alert motorists to the possible danger ahead. This will give them enough time to slow down safely.
  • Look around the scene for any possible hazards. These may include petrol or diesel leaks, fire, oncoming traffic, dangerous animals or hostile bystanders.
  • Assess the scene and see if there are any injuries. If there are, make sure that you phone for help by dialling 082 911 immediately. Remember to give the call taker your number in case the call gets cut off.
  • When you call for help, make sure you have the location of the incident handy. If you are unsure of the exact location, the nearest intersection or large landmark would also be helpful.
  • If possible provide the call taker with a brief description of the accident scene, the number of injured patients and the nature of their injuries.
  • Do not move an injured person unless absolutely necessary as you may cause further injury, especially if the person has suffered spinal injuries. Rather try to keep injured people calm by talking to them and reassuring them that help is on the way.
  • If there are any patients who are bleeding heavily, try to stop the bleeding by compressing the wound with a clean towel or piece of clothing.

“There are also a few other things that you should keep in mind in order to prevent further harm to yourself or to those involved,” says Stanton.

What not to do when you come across a road accident:

  • Never touch an open wound or any bodily fluids of another person if you do not have the necessary protective gear such as gloves, face masks and eye goggles.
  • If a patient has a foreign object impaled anywhere in their bodies, do not remove it unless absolutely necessary as you may cause further harm by removing the object. Wait for emergency medical services to arrive and assist where required.


Issued by:           Martina Nicholson Associates (MNA) on behalf of Netcare
Contact:               Martina Nicholson, Graeme Swinney, Meggan Saville or Alison Sharp
Telephone:        (011) 469 3016
Email:         ,,, or

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The dangers of taking selfies while driving

Drivers are putting lives at risk taking photos or videos of themselves while driving

Monday, July 10 2017

As social media updates continue to draw in and keep people of all ages glued to their mobile devices, it is the growing trend of taking so-called selfies while driving that poses a very real risk to motorists and other road users.

“The popular #drivingtowork and #drivinghome hashtags that many use to post pictures of themselves on social media whilst driving may seem harmless enough, however just taking your eyes off the road for a few seconds can potentially end in tragedy. The reality is that the busier the road is, the more unpredictable the circumstances become, making snapping a photo or video in peak times particularly dangerous.

“Even though most of us have heeded the warning of not texting whilst driving and opted to invest in hands-free devices, the same is not true of the current selfie-while-driving trend that has become very popular.

“People engaging in this type of social media activity need to realise that they are not just endangering their own lives but those of other motorists and road users, including pedestrians,” warns Mande Toubkin, Netcare’s general manager emergency, trauma, transplant and corporate social investment.

And while the number of accidents resulting from selfie-related behaviour are often difficult to determine, largely due to people not owning up to driving negligently, deaths via selfie continue to increase every year. According to MIT Technology Review, the results of data scientists tracking the rise of selfie deaths across the globe indicate that 73 people died while taking selfies in the first eight months of 2016 alone.

“Recent figures indicate that approximately 1 120 more people died on South African roads in 2016 than in 2015, making it the highest annual road death toll since 2007. And if you just look around at how many people are on their phones, particularly when stuck in slow moving traffic, often taking photos of themselves or of other cars or incidents on the road, it’s easy to understand how so many car accidents happen.

“Driving is one of those tasks that demands your full attention. Countless deaths every year are attributed to distracted driving, evidence that taking your hands off the wheel and eyes off the road for just a few seconds is more dangerous than many people realise,” she emphasises.

“Ultimately we want to make drivers aware that talking, texting, checking social media and selfie posts while driving are adding to the already high road accident statistics on South African roads. This begs the question as to whether posting a picture is actually worth risking human lives,” concludes Toubkin.

So what can be done to discourage snapping selfies while behind the wheel? Here are some ways to minimise selfie-related road accidents.

  1. Educate drivers, particularly the younger generation who tend to use social media platforms most, as to the dangers of being distracted and particularly of taking selfies while driving.
  2. Investigate possible distracted driver apps that will assist you in preventing the urge to check and use your phone while driving.
  3. Be vigilant on the road. Take note of, and try and steer clear of, drivers that are on their phones.
  4. Be vocal and warn contacts and friends of the dangers if you should notice a selfie post of them whilst driving.
  5. Don’t post positive or encouraging feedback when you receive selfie pictures from friends. Many thrill seekers thrive on the attention they receive, and will go on to repeat their dangerous selfie stunts, often at a high safety cost to themselves and other road users.


Issued by:           Martina Nicholson Associates (MNA) on behalf of Netcare
Contact:               Martina Nicholson, Graeme Swinney, Meggan Saville, Pieter Rossouw or Alison Sharp
Telephone:        (011) 469 3016
Email:         ,,, or

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Netcare suspends paramedic over Facebook post

Paramedic suspended pending the holding of a disciplinary hearing

Friday, June 9 2017

A paramedic in Netcare 911’s employ, who posted discriminatory remarks linked to the tragic weather conditions in the Cape on his personal Facebook page on Thursday evening, has been suspended pending the holding of a disciplinary hearing which will be scheduled for next week.

The managing director of Netcare 911, Craig Grindell, says, “We completely distance ourselves from the paramedic’s unacceptable comments. Netcare and Netcare 911 have a firm, zero tolerance stance towards discrimination of any kind. We will not hesitate to take the strongest possible action when made aware of any action and or behaviour of a staff member which transgresses the company’s values, ethics and code of conduct.”

“Our thoughts are with the communities of Knysna, Plettenburg Bay and further along the Garden Route in their time of crisis and we extend our deepest condolences to the families who have lost loved ones in the devastating fires,” Grindell concluded.


Issued by:    Martina Nicholson Associates (MNA) on behalf of Netcare 911
Contact    :    Martina Nicholson, Graeme Swinney, Meggan Saville or Pieter Rossouw
Telephone:    (011) 469 3016
Email:,, or



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Netcare and Netcare 911 respond to allegations of a racist post by an employee of Netcare 911

Investigation points to probable hacking of staff member’s Facebook page and creation of fraudulent post to publicly discredit him

Tuesday, May 16 2017

Netcare confirms that both Netcare and Netcare 911 have been made aware that an employee of Netcare 911 is alleged to have posted racist content on his personal Facebook account.

Commenting on the alleged post, Dr Richard Friedland, chief executive officer of the Netcare Group says, “We have a zero tolerance stance towards discrimination of any kind and we will not hesitate to take the strongest possible action when made aware of actions and or behaviour of any staff member who transgresses the company’s values, strict ethics and code of conduct, especially in cases involving racial discrimination.”

“We are indeed proud of our commitment to and the external recognition of our efforts towards transformation in Netcare. In 2016, we formally introduced a specific 7th “Netcare behaviour” which states that ‘We embrace diversity to show that we are not racist’,” he added.

Dr Friedland says the company’s stance is evidenced by the fact that earlier this year, after becoming aware of a racist post placed on Facebook by a staff member she was, after an investigation found her to be guilty, summarily dismissed.

According to Craig Grindell, managing director of Netcare 911, the facts pertaining to the alleged Facebook publication by an employee of Netcare 911, are as follows:
The Facebook post in question was originally brought to Netcare 911 management’s attention on 15 April 2017 by the individual himself, who was made aware thereof by a person outside of Netcare 911 after it was circulated on Facebook platforms.
The Facebook post contains absolutely deplorable and inexcusable racist comments and it does give the impression that it had been posted by the individual on his personal Facebook page.

“We immediately launched an internal investigation at the time of the original incident, and notwithstanding the fact that he had brought the matter to our attention, the individual was placed on special leave whilst the company conducted its investigation,” says Grindell.

“Despite our efforts to communicate directly with Facebook, the Facebook profile that originally posted the racist content could not be validated by Facebook. However this profile was subsequently removed by Facebook.”

“Our investigation, however, indicated that it was likely that the individual’s Facebook account had been hacked into in order to post the absolutely inexcusable comments with the intention of causing him reputational damage,” explains Grindell. 

He added: “Based on the inability to validate the source of the post, a thorough analysis by a third party of the individual’s personal Facebook activity on his electronic equipment over the period concerned, and an affidavit submitted by the individual stating that he had no knowledge of who had potentially posted the post, the case was closed.”

Yesterday, Monday, 15 May, it was brought to Netcare 911 management’s attention that there had been a repeat posting of the original Facebook post on various social media platforms, including WhatsApp and Facebook.

“Based on additional information that has since become available to us, we have reason to believe that the post may have been deliberately and fraudulently created by specific individuals or companies who may have been exposed as having engaged in business practices which may not be viewed as ethical. This exposure relates to actions which occurred during the Netcare 911 employee’s employment with his previous employer and with Netcare 911,” says Grindell.

“We will further our internal investigations in this regard and, given the absolutely offensive nature of the Facebook post, will be engaging the services of external IT investigators in an attempt to identify the source of the posts,” Dr Friedland added.

He reiterated: “As a company we are absolutely committed to dealing with any form of racial discrimination, and trust that the information above clarifies the situation around the Facebook post and our company’s decisive stance and on-going resolute management in instances of discrimination.”


Issued by:              Martina Nicholson Associates (MNA) on behalf of Netcare and Netcare 911
Contact                  :                 Martina Nicholson, Graeme Swinney, Meggan Saville or Pieter Rossouw
Telephone:          (011) 469 3016
Email:            ,, or


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Unaudited interim results for the six months ended 31 March 2017

Aging population, growing burden of disease and medical innovation expected to continue driving demand for private healthcare over medium to longer term

Monday, May 15 2017


  • SA revenue up 2.3% to R9 218 million
  • UK revenue up 3.2% to £458.0 million
  • Group revenue down 10.1% to R16 912 million (23.9% adverse variance in average exchange rate)
  • Adjusted headline earnings per share down 11.4% to 80.6 cents
  • Interim dividend per share of 38.0 cents


Commenting on the results, Netcare chief executive officer, Dr Richard Friedland, said that it has been a challenging interim period. “While our Group revenue in local currencies is growing, both in South Africa (“SA”) and the United Kingdom (“UK”), the appreciating Rand has negatively impacted on the translation of our UK results.”

The financial results were boosted by two key non-trading items, being a non-cash benefit relating to the mark-to-market revaluation of the UK Retail Price Index (“RPI”) swap instruments and a capital profit on the sale of the old Netcare Christiaan Barnard Memorial Hospital (“CBMH”) land and buildings.

Excluding both exceptional items, EBITDA was down 13.1% to R2 313 million, normalised profit after taxation declined by 15.6% and adjusted headline earnings per share (“adjusted HEPS”) reduced by 11.4% to 80.6 cents (2016: 91.0 cents). 

Group revenue fell 10.1% to R16 912 million (2016: R18 814 million). However, in constant currency terms, Group revenue grew by 2.7%, with currency conversion reducing reported revenue by R2 418 million (12.8%), as a result of a stronger Rand.

Divisional review

South Africa
Although the business was challenged by low growth in the economy, revenue in SA grew 2.3% to R9 218 million (2016: R9 011 million).

Excluding the non-trading capital profit on the sale of the old Netcare CBMH land and buildings, SA EBITDA decreased by 2.1% to R1 915 million (2016: R1 957 million) and operating profit decreased by 3.6% to R1 595 million (2016: R1 655 million).

Hospital and Emergency Services
Revenue in this division grew by R391 million (4.6%) against the comparative period. Patient days were affected by a fall in activity from private-paying and foreign patients, as well as patients injured on duty covered by the Workers’ Compensation Fund and, to a lesser extent, from more active case management by medical schemes. In line with activity, full week occupancy levels reduced to 63.2% (2016: 64.4%). An increase in the mix of higher complexity cases was experienced across its hospitals resulting in a 7.4% increase in revenue per patient day, ahead of tariff inflation.

Results were negatively impacted by a decline in Emergency Services revenues from industrial sites in Mozambique, where tough economic conditions curtailed activity in the mining and resources sectors. The position has been exacerbated by the correction in H1 2017 of a non-cash accounting error within the Emergency Services division which relates to the prior year.

The EBITDA margin contracted to 21.1% (2016: 22.6%) negatively influenced by:

  • Lower than anticipated volumes, together with higher demand for ICU from more complex cases, placed pressure on the management of direct payroll, as more specialised care is required. This also resulted in the consumption of more expensive drugs and/or surgicals, on which no margin is earned;
  • Rental charges on the new Netcare CBMH of R16 million in H1 2017, with an impact on EBITDA margin of 20 basis points; and
  • The impact from Emergency Services accounted for 80 basis points of the EBITDA margin decline, of which 50 basis points is attributable to the correction of the non-cash prior period accounting error and 30 basis points to the decline in Mozambique trading.

Commenting on the relocation of the Netcare CBMH to the Cape Town foreshore, Dr Friedland says: “We have already seen a growth in patient days of 5.8% in the period under review, despite having been open for only four months of the reporting period. The opening of the new hospital is the first phase of a development that will culminate in the establishment of a world class medical precinct and centre of excellence, the first of its kind in SA, offering a comprehensive range of primary, secondary and tertiary medical, emergency, diagnostic and rehabilitative services”.

The acquisition of Akeso Clinics, comprising 12 private mental health facilities, which was announced in November 2016, has been submitted to the Competition Commission for approval.  “Sadly, we are seeing an increase in mental illness in SA,” says Dr Friedland, “and Netcare is under-represented in this sector. This transaction is earnings neutral for us in the first year, and thereafter will be accretive, and is being funded through existing debt facilities.”

Primary Care
The national network of Medicross family medical and dental centres outsourced its retail pharmacy operations with effect from 1 December 2016.

Primary Care revenue of R389 million (2016: R573 million) reduced by 32.1%. Operating profit was negatively affected by the start-up costs of new day clinic and sub-acute facilities and related depreciation charges, while the EBITDA margin improved to 12.9% from 9.2%, reflecting the benefit of the retail pharmacy outsourcing arrangement, which replaces retail pharmacy revenue with rental income.

United Kingdom

In the UK, BMI Healthcare’s (“BMI”) network of hospitals serves the National Health Services (“NHS”), the Private Medical Insurance (“PMI”) market, and Self-pay customers.

In a tough trading environment, local currency revenue increased 3.2% to £458.0 million (2016: £444.0 million), as BMI’s inpatient and day caseload grew by 2.6%.

NHS volumes, which now comprise 43.5% of total caseload, continued to be the primary growth driver of activity, with NHS caseload growing by 8.5%. The e-Referrals caseload grew by 10.2% (2016: 8.5%) while NHS spot work remained flat reflecting financial constraints at many NHS Trusts.

There has been no change in the factors affecting the Private Medical Insurance (“PMI”) market, with caseload declining by 3.6% during the period.

Self-pay activity continued to grow, reflecting a 6.4% increase. “We attribute this lift to increasing NHS waiting lists, as well as our packaged pricing, increased range of services and targeted marketing campaigns,” notes Dr Friedland.

BMI EBITDA declined by 25.2% to £24.0 million (2016: £32.1 million) at a margin of 5.2% (2016: 7.2%), due to rental escalations and other one-off credit items in 2016 that did not recur. Operating profit decreased by 55.9% to £6.0 million (2016: £13.6 million).    

In April 2017, BMI Healthcare completed a refinancing of its existing debt facilities. The new debt package comprises a 5-year Term Loan B facility of £85 million and a Revolving Credit Facility of £50 million, with the debt beneficially held by Netcare being further extended to April 2023.


In terms of the outlook for SA, Dr Friedland says: “We expect demand for private healthcare to remain resilient over the medium and longer term as a function of the aging population, the growing burden of disease and medical innovation.”

“However, in the near term, economic pressures and medical scheme interventions may weigh on demand for our services.  Growth is still expected from the new capacity opened in the past two years. Ongoing benefits will be delivered by our long term operational excellence and quality improvement projects, in line with our commitment to best outcomes, best experience and cost-effective care for our patients. Our IT and automation projects are focused on optimising our cost base to deliver sustainable returns going forward. ”

Planned capital expenditure in SA for the full year is expected to reach approximately R1.7 billion which includes the further development of the new Netcare CBMH medical precinct and the expansion of Netcare Milpark Hospital, as well as maintenance and upgrade of medical equipment and the property estate.

Looking at the UK market, Dr Friedland concludes: “The NHS faces ongoing constraints and this should result in further growth in NHS-funded patients being treated in private facilities as well as in the Self-pay market. The PMI market is not expected to improve markedly in the short term.”

Further improvement of patient pathways and the extraction of operating efficiencies will continue to be driven across the business.

BMI Healthcare expects to spend approximately £52.0 million in 2017 on capital projects to enhance its hospital infrastructure, expand its diagnostic capacity and keep abreast of technological developments.


Notes to journalists
Netcare (JSE: NTC) is listed on the JSE and is ranked as South Africa’s most empowered company in the healthcare sector, and 16th overall on the JSE, in the 2016 Top 100 Most Empowered JSE Listed Companies Report.

In SA, Netcare operates the largest private hospital, primary healthcare, emergency medical services and renal care networks. In addition to its world-class acute private hospital services in SA and the UK (the latter offered through BMI Healthcare), Netcare provides:

  • primary healthcare services, occupational health and employee wellness services through Medicross and Prime Cure;
  • emergency medical services through Netcare 911; and
  • renal dialysis through National Renal Care

Netcare also has the distinction of being a leading private trainer of emergency medical and nursing personnel in the country.

Netcare’s core value is care. From this value flow four others, namely dignity, participation, truth and passion. We work hard to entrench these values in every action, decision and intervention we take with our patients, their families, our colleagues and communities.

For more information visit

Issued by:           Martina Nicholson Associates (MNA) on behalf of Netcare
Contact:               Martina Nicholson, Graeme Swinney, Meggan Saville or Pieter Rossouw
Telephone:        (011) 469 3016
Email:         ,, or

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Ongeouditeerde tussentydse resultate vir die ses maande geëindig 31 Maart 2017

Ouerwordende bevolking, n groeiende siektelas en mediese innovasie sal na verwaging steeds die vraag na privaat gesondheidsorg oor die medium tot langer termyn stimuleer

Monday, May 15 2017


  • SA inkomste styg met 2.3% tot R9 218 miljoen
  • VK-inkomste styg met 3.2% tot £458.0 miljoen
  • Groepinkomste 10.1% laer tot R16 912 miljoen (23.9% negatiewe afwyking in gemiddelde wisselkoers)
  • Aangepaste wesensverdienste per aandeel 11.4% laer na 80.6 sent
  • Tussentydse dividend per aandeel van 38.0 sent


In sy kommentaar oor die resultate het die hoof uitvoerende beampte van Netcare, Dr. Richard Friedland, gesê dit was ’n uitdagende handelsperiode. “Hoewel ons groepinkomste in plaaslike geldeenhede groei – beide in Suid-Afrika (SA) en die Verenigde Koninkryk (VK) – het die versterking van die Rand ’n negatiewe uitwerking op die omrekening van ons VK-resultate gehad.”

Die finansiële resultate is deur twee belangrike nie-handelsitems ondersteun, naamlik ’n nie-kontantvoordeel met betrekking tot die herwaardasie van die VK Kleinhandelsprysindeks se ruilinstrumente teenoor markwaarde, en ’n kapitaalwins met die verkoop van die ou Netcare Christiaan Barnard Gedenkhospitaal (CBGH) se perseel en geboue.

Met uitsluiting van beide buitengewone items was die verdienste voor rente, belasting, waardevermindering en amortisasie (VVRBWA) 13.1% laer teen R2 313 miljoen, het genormaliseerde wins na belasting met 15.6% afgeneem en was aangepaste wesensverdienste per aandeel (aangepaste WVPA) 11.4% minder teen 80.6 sent (2016: 91.0 sent).

Groepinkomste het met 10.1% tot R16 912 miljoen gedaal (2016: R18 814 miljoen). Teen ’n konstante wisselkoers het groepinkomste egter met 2.7% gegroei. Die wisselkoersomrekening het gerapporteerde inkomste met R2 418 miljoen (12.8%) verminder, as gevolg van ’n sterker Rand.

Oorsig van afdelings

Hoewel die besigheid lae ekonomiese groei moes trotseer, het inkomste in SA met 2.3% tot R9 218 miljoen gestyg (2016: R9 011 miljoen).

Met uitsluiting van die nie-handelskapitaalwins met die verkoop van die ou Netcare CBGH se perseel en geboue, was SA VVRBWA 2.1% laer op R1 915 miljoen (2016: R1 957 miljoen) en bedryfswins 3.6% laer op R1 595 miljoen (2016: R1 655 miljoen).

Hospitale en Nooddienste
Inkomste in hierdie afdeling het met R391 miljoen (4.6%) toegeneem teenoor die vergelykende tydperk. Pasiëntdae is beïnvloed deur ’n afname in aktiwiteit van privaat betalende en buitelandse pasiënte, asook pasiënte wat aan diens beseer is en deur die Werkersvergoedingsfonds gedek word, en in ’n mindere mate deur meer aktiewe gevallebestuur deur mediese skemas. Volweek besettingsvlakaktiwiteite het ooreenstemmend afgeneem tot 63.2% (2016: 64.4%).

Die toename in meer komplekse gevalle as deel van die algehele gevallelading wat Netcare by  sy hospitale ervaar het, het gelei tot ’n styging van 7.4% in inkomste per pasiëntdag, wat bo tariefinflasie is.

Resultate is negatief geraak deur ’n daling in Nooddienste se inkomste uit industriële bedrywighede in Mosambiek, waar strawwe ekonomiese toestande aktiwiteit in die myn- en hulpbronsektore ingekort het. Die posisie is vererger deur ’n nie-kontantverwante rekeningkundige fout wat verband hou met die vorige jaar en reggestel is in die eerste helfte van 2017, in die Nooddienste-afdeling.

Die VVRBWA-marge het gekrimp tot 21.1% (2016: 22.6%). Die marge is negatief beïnvloed deur die volgende aspekte:

  • Laer as verwagte volumes, tesame met ’n hoër vraag na intensiewesorgdienste voortspruitend uit meer komplekse gevalle, wat druk geplaas het op die bestuur van direkte salarisse, aangesien meer gespesialiseerde sorg nodig is. Dit het ook gelei tot die verbruik van duurder medikasie en/of chirurgiese verbruiksgoedere waarop geen marge verdien word nie;
  • Huurkoste van R16 miljoen vir die nuwe Netcare CBGH in die eerste helfte van 2017, met ’n impak van 20 basispunte op die VVRBWA-marge; en
  • Die impak van Nooddienste, wat vir 80 basispunte van die daling in die VVRBWA-marge verantwoordelik was, waarvan 50 basispunte toeskryfbaar is aan die regstelling van die nie-kontantverwante rekeningkundige fout uit die vorige periode, en 30 basispunte aan die daling in die Mosambiek-besigheid.

In sy kommentaar oor die verskuiwing van die Netcare CBGH na die waterkantgebied in Kaapstad, het Dr. Friedland gesê: “Ons het reeds groei van 5.8% in pasiëntdae gedurende die verslagtydperk gesien, ondanks die feit dat ons slegs vier maande van die verslagtydperk in die nuwe gebou was. Die opening van die nuwe hospitaal is die eerste fase van ’n ontwikkeling wat sal lei tot die vestiging van ’n mediese buurt en sentrum van uitnemendheid wat die eerste in sy soort in SA is, en ’n omvattende reeks primêre, sekondêre en tersiêre mediese, nood-, diagnostiese en rehabilitasiedienste sal aanbied.”

Die koop van die Akeso Clinics, wat uit 12 privaat geestesgesondheidsinrigtings bestaan, is in November 2016 aangekondig en die transaksie is aan die Mededingingskommissie voorgelê vir goedkeuring. “Ongelukkig sien ons ’n toename in geestesiektes in SA,” sê Dr Friedland, “en Netcare is onderverteenwoordig in hierdie sektor. Hierdie transaksie sal nie in die eerste jaar vir ons verdienste lewer nie, maar daarna sal dit geleidelik toeneem, en word deur bestaande skuldfasiliteite befonds.”

Primêre Sorg

Medicross se nasionale netwerk van gesins- mediese en tandheelkundige sentrums het sy kleinhandelsapteek-bedrywighede met ingang van 1 Desember 2016 uitgekontrakteer.

Primêre Sorg se inkomste van R389 miljoen (2016: R573 miljoen) was 32.1% laer. Bedryfswins is negatief geraak deur die beginkoste van nuwe dagklinieke en sub-akute fasiliteite en verwante waardeverminderingskoste, terwyl die VVRBWA-marge van 9.2% tot 12.9% verbeter het en die voordeel weerspieël van die uitkontraktering van die kleinhandelsapteke, wat inkomste uit kleinhandelsapteke deur huurinkomste vervang.

Verenigde Koninkryk

In die VK bedien BMI Healthcare (BMI) se hospitaalnetwerk die National Health Services (NHS), privaat mediese versekering en selfbetalende kliënte.

In ’n moeilike handelsomgewing het inkomste in die plaaslike geldeenheid met 3.2% tot £458.0 miljoen gestyg (2016: £444.0 miljoen), terwyl BMI se hospitaal- en dagpasiëntgevallelading met 2.6% toegeneem het.

NHS-volumes, wat nou 43.5% van die totale gevallelading uitmaak, is steeds die vernaamste groeidryfveer van aktiwiteit. Die NHS-gevallelading het 8.5% groei getoon. E-Referrals se gevallelading het met 10.2% toegeneem (2016: 8.5%), terwyl prosedures wat die NHS by geleentheid van privaat voorsieners koop, onveranderd gebly het en die finansiële druk by baie NHS Trusts weerspieël.

Daar was geen verandering in die faktore wat die privaat mediese versekeringsmark affekteer nie. Die gevallelading het gedurende die verslagtydperk met 3.6% afgeneem.

Volgehoue groei in selfbetaling aktiwiteit het ’n toename van 6.4% getoon. “Ons skryf hierdie styging toe aan groeiende NHS-waglyste, asook ons pakketprysstruktuur, uitgebreide reeks dienste en teikenbemarkingsveldtogte,” sê Dr. Friedland.

BMI se VVRBWA was 25.2% laer teen £24.0 miljoen (2016: £32.1 miljoen) met ’n marge van 5.2% (2016: 7.2%), hoofsaaklik weens stygings in huurkoste en ander eenmalige kredietitems in 2016 wat nie weer voorgekom het nie. Bedryfswins was 55.9% laer op £6.0 miljoen (2016: £13.6 miljoen).

In April 2017 het BMI Healthcare ’n herfinansiering van sy bestaande skuldfasiliteite afgehandel. Die nuwe skuldpakket bestaan uit ’n 5-jaar termynlening B-fasiliteit van £85 miljoen en ’n wentelkredietfasiliteit van £50 miljoen, met die verdere uitstel van die skuld wat namens Netcare gehou word tot April 2023.


Wat die vooruitsig vir SA betref, sê Dr. Friedland: “Ons verwag dat die vraag na privaat gesondheidsorg veerkragtig sal bly oor die medium en langer termyn, as gevolg van die ouerwordende bevolking, die groeiende siektelas en mediese innovasie.”

“Ekonomiese druk en ingrypings deur mediese skemas kan egter die vraag na ons dienste oor die korttermyn beperk. Groei word nog steeds verwag van die nuwe kapasiteit wat die afgelope twee jaar bygevoeg is. Volgehoue voordele sal verkry word uit ons langtermyn-bedryfsuitnemendheids- en gehalteverbeteringsprojekte, in ooreenstemming met ons verbintenis tot beste uitkomste, beste ervaring en kostedoeltreffende sorg vir ons pasiënte. Ons inligtingstegnologie- en outomatiseringsprojekte is toegespits op die optimalisering van ons kostebasis om in die toekoms volhoubare opbrengste te lewer.”

Beplande kapitaalbesteding in SA vir die volle jaar sal na verwagting sowat R1.7 miljard beloop, wat die verdere ontwikkeling van die nuwe Netcare CBGH mediese buurt en die uitbreiding van Netcare Milpark Hospitaal insluit, asook instandhouding en opgradering van mediese toerusting en die eiendomsportefeulje.

Oor die mark in die VK het Dr. Friedland ten slotte gesê: “Die NHS het met voortgesette beperkings te kampe en dit behoort tot ’n verdere toename in die behandeling van NHS-befondsde pasiënte in privaat fasiliteite asook groei in die selfbetalingsegment te lei. Ons verwag nie ’n beduidende verbetering in die privaat mediese versekeringsmark oor die kort termyn nie.”

Verdere verbetering van pasiëntbehandelingsriglyne en die verkryging van bedryfsdoeltreffendheids­voordele sal steeds regdeur die besigheid nagestreef word.

BMI Healthcare verwag om in 2017 sowat £52.0 miljoen aan kapitaalprojekte te bestee om sy hospitaal-infrastruktuur te verbeter, sy diagnostiese kapasiteit uit te brei en aan die voorpunt te bly van tegnologiese ontwikkelinge.


Aantekeninge vir joernaliste
Netcare (JSE: NTC) is op die JSE genoteer en word as Suid-Afrika se mees bemagtigde maatskappy in die gesondheidsorgsektor beskou. Netcare beklee algeheel die 16de plek op die JSE in die JSE se 2016-verslag oor die top 100 mees bemagtigde JSE-genoteerde maatskappye (Top 100 Most Empowered JSE Listed Companies Report).

In Suid-Afrika bedryf Netcare die grootste netwerke van privaat hospitale, primêre gesondheidsorg, mediese nooddienste en niersorg. Benewens sy wêreldklas akute privaat hospitaaldienste in Suid-Afrika en die Verenigde Koninkryk (laasgenoemde word deur BMI Healthcare aangebied), lewer Netcare:

  • primêre gesondheidsorgdienste, beroepsgesondheid- en werknemerwelstand-dienste deur Medicross en Prime Cure;
  • mediese nooddienste deur Netcare 911; en
  • nierdialise deur National Renal Care.

Netcare het hom ook onderskei as ’n toonaangewende privaat opleier van nood mediese en verpleegpersoneel in die land.

Netcare se kernwaarde is sorg. Vier ander waardes vloei hieruit voort, naamlik waardigheid, deelname, eerlikheid en passie. Ons werk hard om hierdie waardes te verskans in elke optrede, besluit en ingryping wat ons pasiënte, hul gesinne, ons kollegas en gemeenskappe raak.
Vir meer inligting, besoek

Uitgereik deur: Martina Nicholson Associates (MNA) namens Netcare
Kontak:                 Martina Nicholson, Graeme Swinney, Meggan Saville of Pieter Rossouw
Telefoon:            (011) 469 3016
E-pos:         ,, of


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Project Save a Life empowers 1110 citizens with CPR basics

Netcare 911 and KZN hospitals team up to bring lifesaving knowledge to the public

Friday, May 12 2017

In a life-or-death situation, a basic understanding of cardiopulmonary resuscitation, or CPR as it is more commonly known, can make all the difference. Netcare hospitals and Netcare 911 in KwaZulu-Natal recently teamed up at a number of shopping malls in the province in order to share this vital lifesaving knowledge with more than a thousand members of the public.

“CPR is a resuscitation technique that performs the same action as the heartbeat and breathing to maintain the flow of oxygenated blood to the brain, thereby preventing brain damage when the heart stops beating. It has many applications, including for heart attacks and near drownings,” says Dr Anchen Laubscher, medical director of Netcare.

“When an emergency arises, every second counts and there is no time to be lost looking in a first-aid book or googling ‘How to perform CPR’. If a person is unconscious, unresponsive and not breathing for themselves, they require immediate help.”

“For this reason, Netcare hospitals in KwaZulu-Natal and Netcare 911 embarked on ‘Project Save a Life’ in order to share this information with the public in shopping centres across the province. Our teams also encouraged members of the public empowered with the basic steps of CPR to pass on what they had learned to their family and friends.”

First aid workshops in CPR were organised by Netcare hospitals and Netcare 911 at various shopping malls around KZN, according to Craig Murphy, regional director of Netcare’s coastal region.

“Our teams were most gratified to reach more than 1000 people, teaching them the basics of CPR, which is enough to potentially save a life, should the need arise,” he notes.

Over 100 members of the public attended Netcare Umhlanga Hospital’s CPR demonstration at La Lucia Mall, 230 attended Netcare Kingsway’s demonstration at Galleria Mall in Amanzimtoti, and over 200 attended the event organised by Netcare St Anne’s Hospital at Cascades Lifestyle Centre in Pietermaritzburg.

Some 250 people attended the event at The Pavilion in Westville, which was a joint event hosted by staff of Netcare St Augustine’s and Netcare Parklands hospitals, and a further 250 attended Netcare Alberlito Hospital’s event at Ballito Junction, while 70 members of the public attended the CPR demonstration organised by Netcare The Bay Hospital at the Boardwalk shopping centre in Richards Bay.

“If you found someone unconscious right now, would you know what to do? If not, it is well worthwhile familiarising yourself with this useful summary of the information imparted to participants of Project Save a Life.”

Steps to saving a life
Get someone to phone an emergency medical services provider, such as Netcare 911 on 082 911, for assistance. If you are alone with the patient, call for help by putting your phone on ‘speaker’ so that you can perform CPR while talking to the operator.

  1. Lay the unresponsive person on their back on a flat surface.
  2. Place one of your hands flat in the middle of the person’s chest, and the other hand on top of it.
  3. Press down hard, compressing the chest by about 5cm, and then release the pressure to allow the heart to refill with blood.
  4. Continue repeating the chest compressions at a rate of about two compressions per second.
  5. For every 30 chest compressions, give the person two rescue breaths. If you do not feel it is safe or hygienic to give the breaths just continue with the chest compressions until help arrives.
  6. Rescue breaths are achieved by pinching the person’s nose closed, tilting their head back and covering their mouth with yours, then exhaling into their mouth until the chest rises.
  7. Continue to perform CPR until the person revives, or professional help arrives.

“The value of early CPR to the patient’s recovery should not be underestimated. Within a few minutes of being deprived of oxygen, irreversible brain damage starts to set in followed by brain death. This illustrates the importance of learning basic CPR, as time is of the essence in a medical emergency,” Dr Laubscher concludes.



Issued by:           Martina Nicholson Associates (MNA) on behalf of Netcare KwaZulu-Natal hospitals and Netcare 911
Contact:               Martina Nicholson, Graeme Swinney, Meggan Saville or Pieter Rossouw
Telephone:        (011) 469 3016
Email:         ,,, or

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Hospital and emergency medical service staff committed to saving lives this Easter

Netcare and Netcare 911 informs the public about travel safety

Thursday, April 13 2017

As the long Easter weekend draws near, many South Africans will be traveling to visit family and friends or one of the country’s many beautiful vacation spots. The increased number of vehicles on the roads, sometimes coupled with fatigue, alcohol or a sense of carelessness, can unfortunately lead to injuries and fatalities on our roads.

“Every motorist has a role to play in making South Africa’s roads safer over this Easter period. By following reasonable safety precautions and courteous driving behaviour, it is possible to reduce the number of accidents, injuries and deaths and ensure that more people reach their destinations and return safely after their holidays,” says Shalen Ramduth, Netcare 911 Director: business development and support services.

Netcare 911 will be out in full force over this holiday season to assist anyone in need of emergency medical attention. With support from Netcare St Anne’s Hospital, Netcare 911 will also be actively engaging with the public, spreading the message of how to stay safe and avoid unnecessary harm while travelling.

“Through educating and informing the public on various ways they can increase their safety and that of their loved ones, we are hopeful to make a difference,” Ramduth observes. “We will be distributing educational flyers and posters with safety tips all along the N3 route near Pietermaritzburg and Durban,” he adds.

He notes that the two major contributors to road accidents are driver fatigue and drunk driving, both of which are preventable. “Drivers need to consider the importance of being mentally alert and in good physical condition when embarking on a road trip. This means that they should get enough rest before undertaking a road journey and never drive under the influence of alcohol, drugs or any medication that might impair their judgement or ability to drive safely,” cautions Ramduth.

“Drivers should also remember that even if they are well rested before departing, driving for long stretches at a time causes driver fatigue,” says Ramduth. “In order to avoid this, take turns with another qualified individual to drive, and remember to stop for a rest and to stretch your legs at least every two hours, as this will help you to stay alert and awake,” he adds.

Before setting off on holiday, drivers should ensure that their vehicle is roadworthy and equipped with a spare tyre in good repair, basic tools, reflective triangle and first aid kit.

“The importance of a first aid kit is often overlooked and sometimes the contents of the kits have expired, rendering them unusable,” says Ramduth. “It is therefore essential to check the contents of your first aid kit regularly and replace any expired or damaged contents,” he adds.

Here is a handy checklist of essential items for your first aid kit:

  • Cotton wool
  • A digital thermometer
  • Medical gloves
  • Two medical eye patches
  • Burnshield dressing
  • A variety of bandages and plasters as well as sterile gauze
  • Antiseptic wipes and liquid
  • A space blanket
  • Safety pins, scissors, tweezers: and
  • Paracetamol tablets and syrup

Netcare St Anne’s Hospital in Pietermaritzburg sees many emergency and trauma patients during Easter, given its close proximity to the East Coast – a popular holiday destination, especially during the Easter holidays. Louis Joubert, general manager of Netcare St Anne’s Hospital, shares some insights on how the public can assist emergency medical personnel in the event of an emergency situation.

“Firstly, it is crucial that your medical history, including details of any medicine allergies and chronic health conditions you may have, your identity document and medical scheme membership information is easily obtainable by paramedics and other emergency staff,” says Joubert.


“If you are involved in an accident, it can save precious time if emergency medical personnel are able to identify you and obtain your medical history quickly, as it will help to speed up your treatment at the scene of the accident or incident and in the emergency department,” he says. “With access to your medical history, paramedics and medical staff will be able to ensure your treatment is appropriate for your individual medical background, and hence, more effective. They will also be able to notify your next of kin more quickly.”

Joubert says it is good practice to prepare and plan your route in advance and to identify any potential problems that may impact you on your journey. “Pinpoint all the hospitals and clinics on your route, so that wherever you are, you will know where the nearest medical facility is. Never stop in an isolated location and ensure that you regularly update at least two people, who are not traveling with you, on your current location,” he advises.

“Technology is making it easier to call for assistance in the case of an emergency, with a partnership between Netcare 911 and mySOS emergency mobile application,” adds Ramduth.

“In an emergency, the mySOS app sends an alert to Netcare 911’s national emergency operations centre, or other relevant emergency services, and your selected loved ones to show them your GPS location,” he explains. “The app also makes a phone call to Netcare 911, or the most appropriate service provider for the type of emergency encountered, so that assistance is mobilised in the shortest possible time.”

In addition, the app can direct you to medical facilities along your route and also includes a function that can track your location while you are travelling, for greater peace of mind for both the traveller and their loved ones. If you do not reach your destination within a time limit set by yourself, the app will alert your selected emergency contacts, providing them with your position and a map of the route you took, while continuing to track your location. This potentially lifesaving service uses minimal battery power on your phone.

The mySOS app can be downloaded for free for Android as well as iOS at

 “It is always our hope that there will not be any accidents, and we hope to pre-empt many preventable accidents by promoting road safety awareness. Nonetheless, Netcare 911’s dedicated emergency care practitioners will be on full alert and ready to assist in case of any medical emergency that may arise,” Ramduth concludes.


Issued by:       Martina Nicholson Associates (MNA) on behalf of Netcare St Anne’s Hospital and Netcare 911
Contact:          Martina Nicholson, Graeme Swinney, Meggan Saville and Pieter Rossouw
Telephone:     (011) 469 3016
Email:    ,, or


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