IT key to Shetty hospital
(CNS): The renowned Indian heart surgeon behind the planned development of a health city in the Cayman Islands said that information technology would play an important part in making the hospital one of the best and safest in the region. Speaking at the groundbreaking ceremony for the first phase of the project at High Rock in East End on Monday, Dr Devi Shetty said that he hoped the facility would be the first paperless hospital, where technology would be used to assist with diagnosis and to allow remote monitoring of patients from India during the night shift in Cayman. Dr Shetty told the group of dignitaries and guests gathered for the official start of the medical tourism project that hospitals in general were not very safe places and even in the west people died due to errors.
He said that when health staff use iPads instead of paper, the mistakes can be cut by half.
The doctor said that in less than ten years software would be common place everywhere in the diagnosis of patients alongside doctors, reducing the margin for error, but the plan would be to introduce that type of technology at the Cayman Islands hospital as soon as possible. The use of technology, he said, could also help monitor the machines keeping people alive in an intensive care unit in Cayman at night by day shift staff that would be fresh and awake miles away in India.
While the goal of the Shetty hospital is to reduce the cost of health care compared to North America, the hospital would become well known, not because the care was less expensive but because it was the safest and the best quality of care, according to Dr Shetty, who will perform the first surgery at the new facility.
Describing the benefits of the health city, the Indian surgeon said local people would have access to high quality care at a reduced cost locally, saving lives. Shetty said people usually die from a heart attack within the first hour and for people in Cayman that is more often than not when they are on the air-ambulance on the way to a hospital to save their lives.
While some 300 workers are expected to be involved in the construction part of the project, Shetty spoke about the medical vacancies that would exist in the future as he promised those young Caymanians who were already studying or wanting to study medicine a job at the hospital.
He said that the medical visitors that wouldl be attracted to the facility would stay longer in Cayman and spend more money than regular tourists, benefitting the local economy. While people think about water sports now when they think about the Cayman Islands, he said, in future they would be thinking about Cayman when they have chest pains or creaky joints.
The groundbreaking event marking the start of the project was for a 140-bed tertiary care hospital due to open in November 2013. A joint venture between Shetty’s Narayana Hrudayalaya Hospitals of India and Ascension Health Alliance, a non-profit healthcare organization in the United States, the goal is to bring high-quality, low-cost healthcare to Cayman.
A US$2-billion project of the 2,000-bed health city is to be built in phases over 15 years on a 200-acre site and will eventually include a tertiary-care hospital, an educational facility, a biotech park and an assisted living community. The multi-specialty hospital will provide services not widely available in the region, such as open-heart/bypass surgery, angioplasty, heart-valve replacement, cancer treatment, bone-marrow transplant, nuclear medicine, organ transplant, and orthopaedics.
Clan Construction, a Cayman-based construction company, was hired earlier this year as the main contractor on the project and up to 300 local workers will be needed for the construction of the first phase of the $50 million project, which is expected to take 14 months to complete.
As well as the groundbreaking, an official website about the project has also been launched which gives details about the work available.
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