Pathology and medical centres operator Primary Health Care has boosted its half-year dividend by 38 per cent after lifting profits 8.6 per cent to $75.5 million.
The company made more money from its medical centres, and increased its margins at its pathology and imaging operations.
Excluding a $3 million after-tax charge regarding the refinancing of bank debt, Primary's half year net profit and earnings per share both rose 13 per cent.
Primary declared a dividend of nine cents per share, up 38 per cent on the 6.5 cents for the same period last year.
Managing director Edmund Bateman said the result was in line with expectations.
"The board is pleased to provide shareholders with an increased dividend, reflecting the stability of the business and the confidence in Primary's outlook," Dr Bateman said in a statement on Wednesday.
Primary confirmed its guidance for the full year, including earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) of $395 million to $410 million and earnings per share growth of seven to 13 per cent.
In the six months to December 31, Primary's revenue grew by 5.2 per cent at its 71 medical centres excluding falls in revenue from dental services.
Dental services were affected by the removal of the federal government's chronic dental scheme funding.
Revenue and earnings in pathology lifted despite a downward funding adjustment of about 1.3 per cent under a memorandum of understanding with the federal government.
Imaging also generated higher revenue and earnings after a significant investment in equipment and information technology.
Shares in Primary were 15 cents lower at $4.78 at 1351 AEDT.
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