Dr Moopen's Group announces Rs 1,500 crore 'Medcity'

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Kochi, Mar 31 (UNI) Dubai-based Dr Moopen's Group today announced plans to set up a complex of hospitals in a 'Medcity', spread over 30 acres here to cater to medical tourists from India and abroad.

Addressing a press conference here, group Chairman Azad Moopen said construction work on the Rs 1,500 crore project is likely to start within six months.

The group has already started talks with the state government and the Kerala State Industries Development Corporation (KSIDC), to get single window clearance for the project.

The group has set up a new joint venture called DM Healthcare (P) Ltd alongwith M/s India Value Fund Advisors as a strategic partner for the Medcity. About one-third of the proposed Rs 1,500 crore investment would be made by DM Healthcare while the remaining would be invested by other partners coming onboard the project.

He said the group has already acquired about 20 acres of land near the Seaport-Airport road in Kochi and is looking for another ten acres.

The 'Medcity', the first in Kerala, would have a large 500-bed 'anchor hospital' as the fulcrum and about ten smaller hospitals of 100 to 200 beds for individual specialities. It will have a built-up area of 2.5 million sq. ft.

Dr Azad Moopen said the group will negotiate with major Indian and foreign players, having speciality in various branches of medicine, to run the speciality hospitals in the proposed 'Medcity'.

He said Phase I of the project was expected to be ready by 2010.

The project is expected to generate 15,000 jobs for doctors, nursing and paramedical staff.

Kerala, which is already attracting medical tourists from overseas had great potential in the field and Kochi was expected to become a ''gateway'' for medical tourists to the country, he added.

Dr Moopen's Group, which had a turnover of Rs 500 crore last year, has a network of about 50 establishments in the GCC countries, including two hospitals, clinics and pharmacies. It is also running the Malabar Institute of Medical Sciences (MIMS) in Kozhikode.

The group's next venture in Kerala, a 300-bed hospital called MIMS-Kottakal, will be opened in Kottakal in six months' time with an investment of Rs 30 crore.

The group was also looking at acquiring three hospitals in Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra this year. Acquisition of hospitals was also planned later in UP and Rajasthan, he added.

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