Reader’s Letter: Medical tourism

POSTED: 12/11/13 7:02 PM

Cayman Islands’ multi-million dollar medical tourism venture is nearing completion with an official opening of the $80 million hospital scheduled for February 25, 2014 and the first patients already booked and to arrive a week later.

Tremendous progress has been made with respect to Cayman Islands medical tourism niche market development, having been described as the “third pillar” of the island’s economy.

Health City Cayman Islands is a 140-bed medical tourism hospital.  The project is a partnership between Dr. Devi Shetty’s India-based Narayana Hrudalaya and Ascension Health Alliance, the largest private non-profit health network in the United States of America.

The Cayman Islands Health City is to grow up to a 2000 bed facility over 15-years, an investment worth $2 billion.  It would be the third-largest hospital in the U.S. attracting more than one million stay-over medical tourists per year. Work on the next phase is set to begin in March 2014.

The 140-bed medical tourism hospital is forecasted to attract over 85,000 stay-over medical tourists per year according government officials back in 2010.  Imagine Sint Maarten attracting an additional 100,000 stay-over medical tourists per year, what a spin-off this would have for our national economy.

Health City Cayman Islands is now in the process of hiring staff for the facility. There are 140 job opportunities available and more than 3,000 job applications have been received.

A Sint Maarten Health City would also create many temporary jobs during the construction phase; and for the staffing and running of the facility, dozens of jobs would also be created.

The country’s move into the medical tourism field would lead to an economic impetus and opportunities.

Roddy Heyliger

 

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