Regulations delay cardiac unit

A cardiac unit promised to Cayman Islands Hospital in George Town by Dr. Devi Shetty in 2010 may not be forthcoming after all due to delays in updating regulations to allow an overseas cardiologist to operate the equipment. 

Although the Health Practice Law, which enables medical staff trained in India and other overseas countries to practise in Cayman, was amended more than a year ago, the regulations are still being worked on, the group behind a planned medical tourism hospital in Grand Cayman told reporters. 

The Cayman Islands Hospital readied an operating theatre for the promised cardiac unit, which would include a catheterisation laboratory, known as a cath lab, as part of renovations it carried out last year. But so far, there has been no sign of the equipment. 

Dr. Shetty, who visited Grand Cayman last week, said the cath lab could arrive on island within two weeks of the regulations being amended. But if his medical tourism Health City Cayman Islands project, which will include its own cath lab, gets under way before the equipment for the cath lab is delivered to Cayman Islands Hospital, there was probably no need to have two cath labs in Grand Cayman.  

“It’s pointless having two cath labs in one island,” Dr. Shetty said. 

Cardiac catheterisation labs produce images of blood flow in the arteries and allow surgeons to clear blockages using stents and other devices. 

“The necessary regulatory issues were not resolved and, in some cases, still have not been resolved to allow our doctors to practise and we cannot operate without doctors,” said local partner Gene Thompson. 

However, Dr. Shetty said he was confident that the regulations would be in place by the time his hospital opens in an expected 14 months’ time. 

“It will be done. We are confident; otherwise we would not be sinking in so much of our money and our time. We have trust in your government, we have 100 per cent trust. We are confident it will be done at the appropriate time,” he said. 

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