Health Is Wealth

Australia’s health care industry is immense – a multibillion-dollar industry that is essential for the stability and growth of Australia’s economy. According to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) hospital spending has been increasing at a rate faster than inflation, where between 2004-2010 it increased by 5% per year (adjusting for inflation). On average during these years, over 9 million Australians entered a hospital as a patient and 2 million underwent surgery.

Research recently conducted confirms that Australians are under-insured, but that trend may be changing. These healthy trend lines are not the only things that’ll get your heart racing about these stocks. If you’re in need of an injection of quality companies into your portfolio, these may be your remedy.

NIB Holdings (ASX: NHF) has made a killing in the personal insurance industry. As a national provider to more than 900,000 customers nationwide of health insurance, life insurance, travel insurance and more health related activities, NIB has made its profits by providing low-cost health insurance products. It continues to entice investors with a 6.1% yield and a healthy share price activity – increasing in advance of 60% this past year.

While we try to insure against ill-health, sometimes treatment is necessary. Many investors will be familiar with Primary Health Care Limited (ASX: PRY), Ramsay Health Care Limited (ASX:RHC) and Resmed INC (ASX: RMD), increasing an infectious 72%, 69% and 48% respectively. All pay a hearty dividend which appeals to growth and yield investors alike.

They’re not the only ones on a health kick. Sonic Healthcare Limited (ASX: SHL) and Ansell Limited (ASX: ANN) have also reported positive shareholder returns this past twelve months.

Foolish takeaway

If we’re healthy, we’re happy. Sometimes it’s better to “Keep It Simply Stupid” and invest in industries that we rely upon. For safety, we know they’ll be there catch us when we fall.

Thinking that good health stocks are too hard to come by? Then click here now to get The Motley Fool’s special FREE report, “3 Stocks For the Great Dividend Boom”. The report lists the names, stock symbols, and full research for our three favourite income ideas, all completely free!

More reading

The Motley Fool’s purpose is to help the world invest, better.  Click here now  for your free subscription to Take Stock, The Motley Fool’s free investing newsletter. Packed with stock ideas and investing advice, it is essential reading for anyone looking to build and grow their wealth in the years ahead.  This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson. Motley Fool contributor Ryan Newman owns shares in NIB Holdings.

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