Once more with feelings: how the film industry generates revenue for the Paris hospitals

Value for Money through assets optimization: Take 1!


Who would have thought about it? Paris Hospitals generate additional revenue through the lease of premises, equipment and even clothing…..for films, TV shows or commercials. It works, and it brings a substantial income to the support of asset operations and maintenance. Let us tell you more.


Hospitals in Paris are a palimpsest of history. Many of these health facilities are in historical monuments, period-feature buildings or were bequeathed historical assets over centuries of activities.


Illustrative of this venerable history is the famous “15-20 hospital” for ophthalmology was founded by King Saint Louis in…1260 BC.


Across close to 900 years, the Paris hospitals have garnered an incredible portfolio of real estate thanks to the public buildings and their 4 million sq.mt. used to provide care and related services.


It also owes a lot to the formidable amount of assets bequeathed to the health authorities managing the healthcare offering in Paris.


The umbrella agency in charge of the management and operations of the Paris region hospitals (AP-HP) certainly pays attention to healthcare mega trends such as asset optimization or additional revenue generation.


Third-party revenue generation in the health infrastructure sector conjures up pictures of energy production and resale or lease and operation of shops or commercial services on the premises.


Sometimes, these additional revenues come from more unexpected sources, such as prestigious vineyards as your Decide reported on different occasions. 


Click here for the jaw-dropping €2 million wine auction in Burgundy, or click here the rights of Peter Pan owned by London’s Great Ormond Street Hospital


Should we carry on with the glamourous examples of unexpected sources of revenue for health facilities? Well, think about the number of commercials, TV shows or films shot in a hospital environment or requiring the background of a hospital for a couple scenes.


Two options are available: building a whole set, hire consultants with a health expertise to ensure credibility of the background; or rent a real hospital. The Paris hospitals offer just this, with a comprehensive range of services including the rental of a hospital wing, room, building or even clothes!


The leaflet designed by the Paris Hospitals umbrella body is particularly comprehensive and marketing-savvy.


It emphasizes the possibility to shoot films or TV shows or commercials in unique buildings along the Seine River, enjoy architecture variety from 17th century facilities to ultra-modern hospitals.


Very pragmatically, it lists areas of interest for artistic shooting: from basements and undergrounds to offices, clinical wards to operating theatres and annexes, the Paris hospitals can cater for all visual communications needs.


It also mentions the range of services developed to help commercial ventures such as the rental of medical devices, including the collection of the hospital museum with over 12,000 items pertaining to medical care over centuries (which may prove particularly handy for period-feature pieces).


They can even help with clothing rental: health professionals’ scrubs or patients’ gowns, the hospitals have them all!


This range of services bring in substantial revenue to the hospital.


Even hospitals in Marseilles try to emulate this third-party revenue generation activity, proposing days of shooting starting at €3,000 per day.


It led to the professionalization of this revenue stream management, with the direction of communications of AP-HP managing this activity. Click here for the dedicated page on their website.


And from a legal perspective, one may ask, where does it fit with the mandate of public hospitals?


Well, it quite naturally falls in the charges for use of public facilities category which is regulated by administrative law.


In sum, it is compatible with the public law rules pertaining to the organization and provision of public service insofar as it does not disrupt the service nor infringes patients’ and staff’s privacy rights nor creates rights for the beneficiary of the license to use the facilities.


Prices with the breakdown of all options can easily be obtained by contacting the direction of communications. Good use of the public assets to alleviate the burden of operational costs? Too remote from the core public service?


Or prosaically a delineation of services that help public authorities “sweating the assets” as a complement to existing commercial activities that routinely take place in a hospital?


Perhaps this simply showcases the innovation streak which is at the heart of public asset optimization across many countries as well as the growing trend to consider health facilities part of the city life.


Far from being sidelined buildings and activities, health facilities and their management structure operate at the heart of communities.


As such they take part in all the activities of these communities: they thrive amidst initiatives, projects, budget constraints as well as find solutions as any other economic and social agent of the community.


While we are only too cognizant that this blog entry is not even close to the glamour brought by a single episode of Grey’s Anatomy or ER when George Clooney was playing the part of Dr Doug Ross, we hope that this brought you a thought-provoking perspective on the way health managers try and optimize the use of health assets and deliver value for money.


So, do we keep this blog take or as they say in Hollywood: back-to-one?



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