Care aids intended for consumption: What are the characteristics of the market and how can it best be managed?

Care aids intended for consumption are supplementary products for care recipients. Persons who have a care degree and are cared for on an outpatient basis and not exclusively by a care service – i. e. with the support of family caregivers – are entitled to purchase these aids. They are included in product group 54 of the list of medical aids as pure billing items.

The best-selling products with fixed monthly flat rate

These billing items differ only in the form of the product being billed. The most commonly billed PG 54 supplies are disposable gloves, hand and surface disinfectants, medical masks (especially during the Corona pandemic), and bed liners. Other products such as protective aprons, disposable bibs or finger cots are ordered much less frequently. A monthly flat rate of 40 euros per insured person is available for ordering, which is also fully utilized by the people who obtain these aids.

Exploiting the market potential as the first challenge

The number of people in need of care who are aware of their entitlement to care aids intended for consumption is only 30%; an even smaller number of those entitled actually use their entitlement. The market is therefore characterized by huge potential, which providers of the so-called care boxes in the form of pharmacies, medical supply retailers, homecare companies and, more recently, online providers have not yet exploited. With a currently estimated market volume of around 400 million euros, just under 80% of eligible patients are still missing out.

Trends will permanently change the provider market

Currently, 60% of providers are still offline (pharmacies, medical supply stores, homecare services), but it is expected that online providers will increasingly prevail due to their lower cost structure. Mega trends such as demographic change and digitization require providers to constantly evaluate and optimize their processes, costs and sales structures.

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