Are these 3 healthcare shares in the buy zone today?

So far in 2017 the healthcare industry has certainly been the place to be for investors. Year-to-date the S&P/ASX 200 Health Care (Index: ^AXHJ) (ASX: XHJ) has vastly outperformed the market as a whole with its 12% gain.

Below are three healthcare shares that I felt warranted a close look.. but are they in the buy zone?

The Ansell Limited (ASX: ANN) share price hasn’t managed to follow the sector higher this year and is down 7% year-to-date. A mixed half-year result appears to be the reason for this. Whilst I think that Ansell has a strong business with defensive qualities, at around 18x annualised earnings I think its shares could be classed as fully valued now. For this reason I would hold off an investment for the time being.

The Mayne Pharma Group Ltd (ASX: MYX) share price has fallen approximately 6% so far this year, bringing its six-month decline to a whopping 37%. Whilst price-fixing allegations and the Trump Administration’s plans to shake up the pharmaceutical industry may be weighing heavily on its shares, I believe the current share price provides investors with a compelling risk/reward. With a number of potentially lucrative drugs in its pipeline, I believe Mayne Pharma is one to buy and hold for the long-term.

The Nanosonics Ltd. (ASX: NAN) share price jumped 10% in the last month thanks to a solid first-half result. The growing popularity of the company’s ultrasound probe disinfection system drove the strong result. This system may soon get even more popular. New guidelines to establish broader requirements for high level disinfection of ultrasound probes internationally were recently announced. Management believes its technology is perfectly positioned to meet the new requirements. Its shares may be expensive, but I think it is a great buy and hold investment option.

Three other shares which I think are great buy and hold investments are listed here. Each looks set for a strong 2017, which I believe could result in market-beating returns.

Top 3 ASX Blue Chips To Buy In 2017

For many, blue chip stocks means stability, profitability and regular dividends, often full franked..

But knowing which blue chips to buy, and when, can often be fraught with danger.

The Motley Fool's in-house analyst team has poured over thousands of hours worth of proprietary research to bring you the names of "The Motley Fool's Top 3 Blue Chip Stocks for 2017."

Each one pays a fully franked dividend. Each one has not only grown its profits, but has also grown its dividend. One increased it by a whopping 33%, while another trades on a grossed up (fully franked) dividend yield of almost 7%.

If you're expecting to see the likes of Commonwealth Bank, Telstra and Wesfarmers shares on this list, you'll be sorely disappointed. Not only are their dividends growing at a snail's pace, their profits are under pressure too due to the increasing competitive environment.

The contrast to these "new breed" blue chips couldn't be greater... especially the very real prospect of significant share price gains, something that's looking less likely from the usual blue chip suspects.

The names of these Top 3 ASX Blue Chips are included in this specially prepared free report. But you will have to hurry. Depending on demand - and how quickly the share prices of these companies moves - we may be forced to remove this report.

Click here to claim your free report.

Motley Fool contributor James Mickleboro has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of Nanosonics Limited. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

Two New Stock Picks Every Month!

Not to alarm you, but you’re about to miss a very important event! Chief Investment Advisor Scott Phillips and his team at Motley Fool Share Advisor are about to reveal their latest official stock recommendation. The premium “buy alert” will be unveiled to members and you can be among the first to act on the tip.

Don’t let this opportunity pass you by – this is your chance to get in early!

Simply enter your email now to find out how you can get instant access.

By clicking this button, you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. We will use your email address only to keep you informed about updates to our website and about other products and services we think might interest you. You can unsubscribe from Take Stock at anytime. Please refer to our Financial Services Guide (FSG) for more information.