Health City: A milestone achievement

Today’s opening of Health City Cayman Islands may be remembered as the most significant event in Cayman Islands business history since William Stuart Walker arrived and founded the country’s first law firm 50 years ago. That event led to the establishment of these islands as an international financial center.

This newspaper, along with news outlets across the globe, has attempted repeatedly to describe the potential impact of the project (affectionately known as the “Shetty hospital”) in terms of raw numbers: 140 beds initially; plans for 2,000 beds in 15 years; US$2 billion in capital investment; hundreds of jobs; tens of thousands of medical tourists per year; more than $3 billion added to Cayman’s gross domestic product over the decade.

But a simpler and more effective way to illustrate the point might be to direct your attention to the photograph on today’s front page.

The four men pictured — Dr. Devi Shetty, Anthony Tersigni, Gene Thompson and Harry Chandi — together can lay claim to making today’s grand opening a reality.
Indian cardiologist and philanthropist Dr. Shetty is the chairman and founder of Narayana Health, a healthcare service provider with more than two dozen locations and 6,300 hospital beds. Dr. Shetty’s vision of Health City and indefatigable determination have from the beginning driven the process of establishing the medical complex in Cayman.

Mr. Tersigni is the president and CEO of Ascension, a Catholic healthcare organization based in St. Louis, Mo., whose subsidiaries include Ascension Health, the largest Catholic nonprofit health system in the United States. In the Health City partnership, Mr. Tersigni saw an opportunity to learn about Dr. Shetty’s cutting-edge cost-cutting methods to deliver healthcare while fulfilling his organization’s mission of tending to the poor — a goal Dr. Shetty shares, as evidenced by his life’s work.

Mr. Chandi and Mr. Thompson, both Caymanians, are the local partners on Health City and are responsible for introducing Dr. Shetty to Cayman, cutting through bureaucratic red tape and overseeing the construction of the facility — which by itself is an impressive feat, as the project created about 200 jobs for Caymanians and was delivered right on time.

Just the one photo of those four men, highly prominent in India, the U.S. and Cayman, shows how Health City will extend not only its own brand but the brand of the Cayman Islands far beyond our borders.

Pick up a copy of tomorrow’s newspaper to read about the thousands of people, hundreds of them from overseas, who will converge today on the district of East End for the grand opening of Health City.

The people in attendance represent (and in many cases, are at the very top of) major international and multinational organizations, including, for starters, nonprofit health giant Kaiser Permanente, medical-device maker Medtronic, IT giant Infosys, Bank of America, Fortune 500 firm Cognizant, Baptist Health South Florida, Mayo Clinic, University of Minnesota, University of Miami and Harvard University — in addition to individuals who are incredibly accomplished entrepreneurs and high-profile investors.
For those pioneers working at the intersection of medicine, technology and academia, today’s opening of Health City is a celebration that was not to be missed.

For the Cayman Islands, the event is one that will not be forgotten.