Graham Ewart, DHG

Pressure care manufacturer Direct Healthcare Group has claimed that it is on course for an £89 million turnover in 2021 following a surge of growth for the healthcare sector.

The Caerphilly-based healthcare company, which provides pressure care management, moving and handling equipment, specialist seating and bathroom safety solutions for patients in hospitals, acute care environments, residential care homes and private homes, claims that it took five months’ worth of orders in two weeks as lockdowns were imposed last spring.

Working with 35 Trusts across the UK, DHG has stated that it equipped the NHS with over 3,000 surfaces and beds during the COVID-19 pandemic, in addition to providing emergency rentals and equipment to four of the NHS Nightingale hospitals.

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Graham Ewart, CEO at DHG, says that the COVID-19 pandemic presented unprecedented challenges for both the organisation and the healthcare sector as a whole.

“Overall, we saw an increase in demand from March to May as the pandemic took hold, followed by a softening in the summer, and then another surge this winter.

“Speed of provision has now become crucial and we’ve seen the demand for specialist products drop in favour of standardised equipment which can be provided urgently.

“We typically experience a yearly surge in our service and rental line each year due to the NHS capacity pressures which occur every winter, but this has been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, and is currently the fastest growing part of the business in the UK.”

The organisation reported a full year turnover of £59.8 million for 2020 but is now set for a 49 per cent leap in business growth over the next 12 months taking turnover to a forecasted £89.4 million.

Founded in 2009, DHG has a direct presence in five European countries and distributes products to a further 35 across Asia, North America and Australasia. It now holds 15 per cent market share in Europe for its sector across pressure ulcer prevention and patient handling. Exports soared to an annualised £27.6 million in the year to December.

The stellar performance follows a number of acquisitions by DHG in the UK and Europe over the past 12 months, including Talley Group, GATE Rehav Development AB. Handicare’s Patient Handling Europe division, Finland-headquartered Carital Group Oy and UK-based Lynch Healthcare Group.

The Group, which employs over 500 people, is also preparing to make further acquisitions over the next year.

Ewart continued: “While this year has been challenging, I am pleased we have been able to move forward with our original strategy to allow us to enter different markets, cross sell products and become a truly international group with pan-European operations, and over the next twelve months, we will continue to focus on this product and geographical expansion.

“We have entered 2021 in a very strong position and on target to become the number one in Europe in enabling patient mobility and independence.”

The company has also heavily invested in Ethos, its free training service for medical professionals. Since its launch in February 2020, it has already trained over 6,000 clinicians, the majority of training has focused on COVID discharge.

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