Coronavirus hits finances of Morocco’s private clinics, pharmacies

Coronavirus hits finances of Morocco’s private clinics, pharmacies

Revenue of Morocco’s private clinics and pharmacies dropped significantly, as many patients shun medical treatment over coronavirus fears.

Head of Morocco’s private clinics association, Redouan Semlali, said revenue for most clinics dropped by 60 to 85% over the last two months with losses estimated at 100 million dollars.

Quoted by L’economiste daily, Semlali said Damane Oxygen, a state guaranteed loan mechanism, was not helpful because clinics were dissuaded by banks’ high interest rates.

Tax deferral did not include VAT tax which further hurts the finances of these private health enterprises, he said.

Private clinics have often been criticized for charging high prices that are not in line with the purchasing power of most citizens who have to rely on public health infrastructure.

Generalist doctors in the private sector saw revenue drop by up to 80% while 9000 out of some 12,000 pharmacies in the country are in dire financial situation.

Morocco’s Pharmaceutical industry, which employs 50,000 people and generates turnover of $1.5 billion, is also suffering after a 50% drop in activity over the last two months.

Operators deplore that only 1% of the $33 million dedicated to investments in the sector has been earmarked for research and development and the rest for renewing machinery and production tools.

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