3 top healthcare shares I would buy today

So far this year the S&P/ASX 200 Health Care (Index: ^AXHJ) (ASX: XHJ) has been one of the best performing sectors on the local market with a stunning 24% gain.

Despite this strong gain I don’t for a second believe it is too late to invest in the sector. Three healthcare shares which I think are in the buy zone are as follows:

Japara Healthcare Ltd (ASX: JHC)

I believe that this aged care provider is positioned perfectly to profit from rising demand for aged care services over the next couple of decades. While earnings may be expected to be flat this year as it focuses on its investment in additional beds, I expect strong profit growth in FY 2019 when these new beds come on line.

Ramsay Health Care Limited (ASX: RHC)

As well as aged care services, demand for healthcare services is expected to rise considerably as Australia’s population ages. Although there are a number of hospital and medical centre operators to choose from on the ASX, none come close to Ramsay in terms of quality and growth potential in my opinion.

Zenitas Healthcare Ltd (ASX: ZNT)

Zenitas is a recently listed home care and health services company. Although it is reasonably small, it has a bulging cash balance and a management team looking out for earnings accretive acquisitions. Furthermore, I think the company is in a strong position to profit over the next decade due to the National Healthcare Reform pushing the burden of healthcare services from hospitals into primary care.

Looking for more buy and hold investment opportunities? Then check out these top shares.

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Motley Fool contributor James Mickleboro has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. 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.

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