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Vernacare plans expansion in South Africa

Vernacare : 05 June, 2007  (New Product)
Vernacare plans to establish a South African operation that will open in Johannesburg during July 2007.
The company already exports its Infection control products to 43 countries across every continent.

With economic growth more than double that of the UK and a higher proportion of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) spent on health, South Africa is seen as an attractive market for Vernacare, which has previously worked with a local distributor to introduce its macerator and medical pulp products to many of South Africa's private hospitals.

Vernacare, which is a market leader in the manufacture and supply of Infection control products for the healthcare sector and is a top 30 supplier to NHS, has been at the forefront of medical pulp innovation for the past five decades - also manufacturing and supplying the industry's leading macerator, which is used by 85 percent of UK hospitals.

'The problem of hospital acquired infections (HAI) is just as much an issue in South Africa as the UK and there is a strong will to embrace best practice in Infection control and human waste management,' said Karen Haslam, chief executive of Verna Group.

She added: 'In the country's private hospitals, insurance companies will not pay for additional bed days resulting from HAIs, so enhanced hygiene offered by our maceration and single-use pulp toileting and washing products is an attractive proposition'.

'The fact that these products also save nurses' time is an added advantage, particularly at a time when it is difficult to retain trained staff '.

'There are 849 acute hospitals with almost 155,000 beds in South Africa, so we see huge market potential, with future scope to penetrate other areas of Africa'.

'We will be starting out initially with a local staff of nine people'.
Vernacare opened its first overseas subsidiary in Canada 15 years ago and is seeking to expand across Europe.
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