Mediclinic Morningside in Johannesburg. Photo: Leon Nicholas.

Johannesburg - Mediclinic International, South Africa’s largest private-hospital owner, posted a 23 percent increase in full-year profit as more patients came to its hospitals and spent more per visit.

Operating profit advanced to 6.5 billion rand in the 12 months through March, the Stellenbosch-based company said in a statement today.

The company benefited “from a marked increase in the number of patients treated,” chief executive Danie Meintjes said.

“We continue to invest for growth across our businesses.”

Mediclinic, which has operations in Switzerland and the United Arab Emirates, generates more than 60 percent of revenue and earnings outside South Africa, he said.

Sales rose 24 percent to 30.5 billion rand as the average income per bed-day, the number of patients admitted and the average length of stay all increased.

Including one-time costs related to debt and acquisition charges, basic earnings per share climbed to 4.15 rand from a loss of 1.50 rand.

A weaker South African currency against the Swiss franc and United Arab Emirates dirham also had a positive effect on results.

Mediclinic shares have gained 2.6 percent this year, giving the company a market value of 64.5 billion rand.

Competitor Netcare has risen 6.1 percent. - Bloomberg News