DaVita HealthCare Partners (formerly DaVita) gives life in the form of dialysis treatments to patients suffering from end-stage renal disease (chronic kidney failure). Through its DaVita division, the company is one of the country's largest providers of dialysis, operating or providing administrative services to more than 1,900 outpatient dialysis centers across the US. The firm also offers home-based dialysis services, as well as inpatient dialysis in some 900 hospitals. The firm operates two clinical laboratories that specialize in routine testing of dialysis patients and serve the company's network of clinics. Subsidiary HealthCare Partners operates primary care clinics and physician practices in several states.
The company changed its legal name from DaVita to DaVita HealthCare Partners in late 2012 after it completed its acquisition of private medical group management firm HealthCare Partners. The purchase was conducted through a merger transaction worth some $4.4 billion; following the deal, HealthCare Partners began operating as a subsidiary of DaVita HealthCare Partners, while the dialysis division continues to operate under the DaVita name. The two companies both count California and Florida as key markets, and DaVita HealthCare Partners plans to use HealthCare Partners' integrated care model to help it offer a wider range of healthcare services.
California, Florida, and Texas are home to about 30% of all DaVita dialysis centers, though the firm has locations in more than 40 US states. Nearly all of the company's outpatient dialysis centers are either wholly owned or majority-owned by DaVita. Some 30 centers are owned by third parties, which pay DaVita for administrative services. The company has also established a presence in select international markets, including China, Germany, India, and the Middle East.
The HealthCare Partners unit operates and manages medical groups and physician practice networks in California, Florida, Nevada, and New Mexico.
Dialysis and lab services accounted for more than 90% of the company's revenues in 2011 (prior to the HealthCare Partners acquisition). DaVita and its main competitor, Fresenius Medical Care, together control more than 60% of the US dialysis clinic market. While the two companies each hold roughly a third of the market, Fresenius also actually manufactures dialysis supplies and DaVita is a customer. Home infusion of medications and nutritionals to patients with chronic or acute conditions is provided by the HomeChoice Partners subsidiary.
Almost 90% of the company's dialysis patients are covered by government-based health plans, including Medicare, Medicaid and the VA, making DaVita particularly vulnerable to changes in government reimbursement rates (which are regularly under threat of being lowered by state and federal governments facing budget pressures). The balance of the income comes from commercial insurance payers.
A portion of DaVita's dialysis and lab-related revenues comes from administering specialty pharmaceuticals to patients receiving dialysis. The pharmaceuticals include vitamin D, iron supplements, and EPO -- a genetically engineered protein that stimulates the production of red blood cells. EPO is used during dialysis to treat anemia (a common complication). Amgen is the only company manufacturing EPO and in 2011, to buffer against price fluctuations or shortages, DaVita struck a multi-year agreement with Amgen to secure its supply of EPO at discounted pricing.
In addition to dialysis services, DaVita also offers other services related to kidney disease, including specialty pharmacy services and the operation of chronic kidney disease management programs for employers and health plans. DaVita's Nephrology Partners business provides practice management and administrative services to physicians groups, and its DaVita Clinical Research business conducts research trials with dialysis patients.
Historically, DaVita has grown its network of facilities through acquisition of outpatient dialysis centers. In 2011, for example, the company accumulated about 200 more centers around the US through a series of purchases. The company has also been looking to branch out into new areas of health care, including medical practice management, a mission it accomplished through the 2012 purchase of HealthCare Partners.
Mergers and Acquisitions
DaVita significantly widened its domestic network of dialysis centers when it acquired regional dialysis chain DSI Renal for $690 million in 2011. To secure approval for the deal from the FTC, DaVita agreed to divest 30 clinics, but overall the acquisition added more than 100 dialysis centers to its holdings.
While its international operations are still a tiny fraction of its total business, the company is involved in a long-term strategy to expand into overseas markets for growth through acquisitions and partnerships. In the Asia/Pacific region, DaVita entered the Malaysian market in late 2012 by acquiring a dialysis center near Kuala Lumpur and opening two new joint venture centers there. Earlier that year it announced plans to enter China through a new joint venture to provide dialysis services with Chinese biotech company 3SBio. Also in 2012 it shored up its presence in India by acquiring a controlling interest in NephroLife.
Elsewhere around the world, DaVita entered Germany with the 2011 purchase of DV Care. It also expanded into the Middle East through the acquisition of a majority stake in Lehbi Care, a leading Riyadh-based kidney care company with three clinics. – less