, the services provider for the out-of-hospital healthcare sector, is turning around Vocare, an integrated urgent care services provider to the NHS, which it acquired for £11 million back in 2017.
Vocare provides GP out-of-hours services, NHS 111 services via its call centres, and urgent care centres for NHS A&E departments, for Clinical Commissioning Groups covering over 9 million patients nationally. The size of market is substantial, with the NHS spending £120bn per year. £20bn of that outsourced.
Vocare was previously the subject of reports highlighting inadequacies of some of its services. The acquisition was aimed to expedite the turnaround in Vocare’s quality of service.
Totally Health follows a buy and build strategy in the out-of-hospital healthcare sector, which made Vocare’s acquisition a good fit, and brought significant turnaround for Vocare.
Since being taken over, it has managed to increase its turnover to £40m in November, which is almost double its turnover of £21.3m reported earlier that year in March. This is a continuation of the dramatic increase the company saw from its 2016 turnover, which was £3.97m before the acquisition.
It has been able to do this by successfully extending and renewing its existing contracts, as well as securing new business.
In its April 8, 2019 trading update, the company told investors that it has managed to secure in excess of £35 million in new and renewed contracts across its subsidiaries. Management also noted that trading was “in line with consensus market expectations”, with c.£7.5m of cash at bank.
Shares in Totally were trading 7.8% higher at 13.13p a share following the update
The company said “The Board believes Totally is well positioned to take further market share within the integrated urgent care market and other community-based healthcare services”
It was awarded a two year contract extension, valued at a total of c.£10.6m, by the Central London Clinical Commissioning Group in February. Investors will be anticipating the final results, expected to be announced by end of July 2019.
Of the 22 services inspected by the Care Quality Commission in 2018, 10 were good, 6 required improvement and 3 were inadequate. However, in 2019, 20 were rated good, 2 required improvement and none were rated as inadequate, representing a significant turnaround.
In August 2017, the NHS announced that contracts will only be awarded to “providers who are able to supply the total integrated service of the NHS 111 non-emergency service, GP out of hours and Urgent Care Centres”. Given that Vocare is integrated supplying all those services, the group looks to be positioned well.
Wendy Lawrence, CEO of Totally mentioned that “GP Out-of-Hours services are a vital part of a broader integrated urgent care offering and I am pleased that the NHS recognises the importance of a collaborative approach to address the rising pressure on emergency care services” after being awarded a contract extension with NHS Vale of York Clinical Commissioning Group.
She added “As one of the leading providers of urgent care services in the UK, Vocare is well placed to benefit from this trend.”
Interestingly, Totally also owns a collection of other companies within its group, which Chairman Bolt Holt said, puts the firm in a uniquely beneficial position. It owns Premier Physical Healthcare and Optimum Physiotherapy, who supply occupational physiotherapy to NHS, prisons, police force, private clients.
It also owns About Health Limited a community-based dermatology services and referral management services firm, as well as Totally Health, a clinical health coaching firm for B2B to NHS and private sector, and direct-to-consumer health coaching.
Totally is lead by CEO Wendy Lawrence, who worked with NHS for over 20 years, during which she was CEO of three large primary care trusts.
Wendy in the trading update told investors: "2018 was a year of integration and improvement as we focused on integrating Vocare into the enlarged Group following its acquisition in October 2017.”
“I am very pleased with the significant progress that has been achieved on this front and the successful results of the extensive changes that have been implemented across all subsidiaries to improve the quality of services, create synergies and reduce costs.”
"We now look forward to the year ahead where we intend to continue to deliver high quality services, whilst seizing the opportunities that exist within the integrated urgent care sector, in line with the NHS' Long Term Plan published in January 2019 ."
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