From healthcare real estate to the well-being society:

New challenges for Europe

Enabling people to live in good health, and promoting well-being at all ages, are essential conditions for improving the quality of life.

Henry-Aurélien Natter

While healthcare real estate needs to be considered on a European scale to achieve a relevant investment strategy, the sector benefits from solid and encouraging fundamentals resulting from continued demographic pressure and the rapid ageing of the population. Investing in health infrastructure also means offering the possibility to all to enjoy better health and promote well-being, which are essential elements for improving the quality of life in our societies.

Henry-Aurélien Natter
Head of Research Primonial REIM
Etude immobilier de santé

Enabling people to live in good health, and promoting well-being at all ages, are essential conditions for improving the quality of life.

Prior to the pandemic, major progress had been made to improve the health of millions of people. Significant advances have increased life expectancy and reduced the impact of certain major causes of death.

But new efforts are now needed, to address health issues old and new and to ensure continuous improvements in the population’s health and well-being.

Improvements in health and well-being will come in part through an expansion of real estate infrastructure:

  • retirement homes and assisted-living senior housing
  • nursing homes
  • hospitals/clinics
  • psychiatric institutions/well-being centresli>
Etude immobilier de santé SCPI

​​​This expansion of European healthcare infrastructure creates numerous challenges which have been clearly identified:

  • institutions will have to invest massively to offer suitable solutions;
  • as public supply is limited, governments will need to turn to private investors in healthcare real estate across Europe, to meet future demand for new buildings and for the renovation of some ageing, even obsolete, facilities.

These significant healthcare real estate infrastructure needs are driven over the long term by demographic factors:

  • the general growth of the population, which will put pressure on healthcare systems;
  • the rapid ageing of the population, which will result in people living longer in better health, but will also leave senior citizens facing the development of the conditions that come with advanced old age.
Etude immobilier de santé SCPI Primovie

​​​​​Healthcare real estate constitutes a responsible investment as it contributes to a model of society which has at its heart the good health and well-being of individuals, healthy living, or the fact of promoting well-being for all. Prevention is a financial as well as a medical necessity. Funding preventative measures (tackling obesity, screening for cancer, etc.) generates savings that will allow healthcare systems to remain viable.

The general shift towards upstream prevention rather than downstream medical intervention is a fundamental trend. The main global causes of avoidable disease are smoking, dietary imbalances and excess alcohol consumption. Some studies have also identified pollution as a factor in shortening life expectancy. There is a consensus that the costs of prevention are less than the costs of medical treatment if the groups affected are sufficiently large1. As a result it is likely that public policy will increasingly incorporate this approach, as it becomes more culturally acceptable. One example is the phased tobacco ban in New Zealand from 2023.

The continuing demographic pressure and rapid ageing of the population are creating needs that make investment in healthcare infrastructure an absolute necessity. There is a real need for the renovation of existing facilities and for additional beds in healthcare establishments and nursing homes in order to cope with future demand, and this need represents investment in the tens of billions of euros.

Understanding the drivers of the demographic and real estate trends affecting healthcare infrastructure is therefore essential for building a Europe-wide longterm investment policy.


1Cohen JT, Neumann PJ, Weinstein MC (February 2008). «Does preventive care save money? Health economics and the presidential candidates». The New England Journal of Medicine

The team

Daniel While
Daniel While Research, Strategy & Sustainability Director

Henry-Aurélien Natter
Henry-Aurélien Natter Head of Research