Dialysis machines act as an artificial kidney. Source: Fresenius
In Germany, the market for dialysis is changing – and it’s causing concern among thousands of doctors across the country.
Multinational companies are moving into the market and while the deal sizes may not be dramatic, there are significant implications for the care of kidney failure in Germany. Doctors fear that the new companies will buy up practices, pushing out independent nephrologists.
Until recently, Germany’s dialysis market was relatively stable, worth €2 billion, and dominated by 2,000 practicing nephrologists and two nonprofit organizations.
Now, though, more and more international companies are operating dialysis companies in the German market. There’s so much new competition that independent nephrologists are being forced to band together to fend off the attack.
There are plenty of examples of this new internationalization of the profession. Recently DaVita, a private dialysis company from the United States, bought several dialysis centers in Lower Saxony, raising its number of centers from five to 40.