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Healthcare infrastructure upgrade in UAE brings management of hospitals into focus

10 Apr 2012 12:56

According to Zawya Project Monitor, existing healthcare infrastructure in the GCC is valued at more than $10.2 billion. Industry experts estimate that strengthening healthcare infrastructure in the GCC would boost overall expenditure as well as per capita spending through improved services at new facilities.

GCC-wide plans for hospital infrastructure upgrade are enticing big investors into the region such as UAE-based medical company DM Healthcare who plan to grow their healthcare units to 300 across the Gulf and India by the end of 2015 with investments of $500 million. Celebrating its 25th year of operation, DM Healthcare will be showcasing their latest healthcare projects at the upcoming Hospital Build & Infrastructure Middle East 2012 taking place from 4-6 June 2012 at the Dubai International Convention & Exhibition Centre.

According to Executive Director of DM Healthcare, Dr. Sanjiv Malik, expanding their presence in the UAE is a priority. “We are planning a 100-bed multi-specialty hospital in Dubai which will be ready by the end of 2013 along with a number of medical centres to facilitate the treatment and care for the growing population of the UAE. A 150-bed multi-specialty hospital in Sharjah is also in the pipeline and is aimed to be completed by the end of 2013.”

Alpen Capital’s GCC Healthcare Industry Report (Dec 2011) indicates that the UAE’s 2011-2012 national budget allocated AED3 billion for health projects and services. The UAE healthcare market is expected to expand to 12.1% to $8 billion from an estimated $4.5 during 2010-2015 while the number of hospital beds is estimated to increase at CAGR of 2% to 10,562 in 2015. The report also states that hospital infrastructure projects worth $5.7 billion have either been announced or are in progress in the country.

“What differentiates the UAE from the rest of the GCC in terms of its healthcare landscape is that 85 per cent of the population is made of an expatriate population. In order to reverse the trend of patients seeking medical treatment abroad, relevant authorities must continue to actively encourage more private-sector investment into the industry, offer efficient and culturally sensitive healthcare services, as well as upgrade and expand on existing medical facilities in the country,” said Dr. Malik.

Speaking as Chair of the Healthcare Management Excellence Congress, taking place at Hospital Build & Infrastructure Middle East 2012, Dr. Malik said, “There is a paradigm shift in the way hospitals are constructed, designed and managed today. With new players coming into the private healthcare segment in the UAE, it is important that healthcare services are provided efficiently, with empathy, be based on evidence-based medicine and that healthcare facilities embrace the tools and techniques of effective healthcare management principles. The introduction of mandatory Health Insurance in most GCC countries means that the demand for efficient and cost sensitive healthcare will increase exponentially in the coming years. The Healthcare Management Excellence Congress aims at addressing issues such efficiency enhancement, customer satisfaction, marketing and PR tools, and will be a great platform for professionals from different verticals in the hospital build industry to gain knowledge on the latest construction and design trends in the healthcare sector.”

Hospital Build & Infrastructure, organised by Informa Life Sciences Exhibitions, is the fastest-growing, global business-to-business platform dedicated to bringing together investors, commissioners, backers and managers of healthcare-related building projects with key players in planning, design, construction, operations, management, supply and refurbishment.

“As investment in the region's healthcare infrastructure continues to rise, this event is set to be bigger than ever with more than 130 exhibitors covering 5,000sqm of exhibition floor space, an estimated 4,500 visitors, as well as more than 600 conference delegates,” commented Simon Page, Managing Director, Life Sciences, Informa Exhibitions.

At this year’s event, Deloitte we will be presenting a series of free healthcare landscape presentations outlining the challenges in regional healthcare regulation as well as capacity planning for healthcare projects.

For more information on Hospital Build & Infrastructure Middle East 2012, please visit www.hospitalbuild-me.com.