The COVID-19 pandemic and related restrictions in socio-economic life, are one of the main factors contributing to a strong increase in the number of mental problems in Polish society. As shown by the PMR survey, in 2020 and the first half of 2021, the number of patients with problems such as depression and anxiety increased the most, due to the economic crisis, threat/loss of work, inability of companies to function, isolation, fear for loved ones.

 

Increased problems have not improved the market for psychiatric services

Despite the favourable trends for the value of the psychiatric services market, according to our estimates, the total value of the psychiatric care market in 2020 recorded a decline of 0.1% y-o-y. This is primarily due to the fact that the market is dominated by inpatient public treatment, which recorded a significant reduction in activity. Many public and converted hospitals report that they did not perform 100% of their contract with the National Health Fund (NHF) last year. While it is possible to carry forward funds to 2021, in our methodology we do not count services performed in the current year against the 2020 value.

Therefore, our forecast assumes that there will not be a significant “rebound” in the psychiatric services market this year. For example, some units have reported that extending the time for contract performance into 2021 has done little, due to the continuing pandemic. It is worth noting, however, that the market is dominated by providers that offer services under contracts with the NHF The private segment is a little different – here we anticipate double-digit growth in the value of psychiatric and psychological services over the forecast horizon to 2026.

 

Market assessment by service providers: PMR survey results

One fifth of the units participating in the PMR* survey cite the COVID-19 pandemic and the associated impeded access to medical care as a barrier to their activities. This problem therefore also occurred in the psychiatry sector – despite some increase in mental health problems related to the economic crisis and COVID-19 itself. However, this limitation was not as great as in other areas of medicine – it is worth noting that in a similar survey on private multi-specialty clinics, the COVID-19 pandemic was cited as a barrier by as many as 67% of units, and overall the decrease in the value of the on-site fee-for-service medical market is estimated by PMR at 21%.

 

Rynek opieki psychiatrycznej w Polsce 2021-info-en

 

* PMR conducted a survey among medical facilities providing psychiatric care services from 28 June to 13 July 2021.

More information on the results of PMR’s survey and information on current trends on the psychiatric care market in Poland can be found in the PMR report: “Psychiatric care market in Poland 2021. Market analysis and development forecasts“.

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