Gold standard care at Cayman's Health City

Last month, Health City Cayman Islands marked its first full year of accepting patients. That was an occasion deserving, perhaps, of a little bubbly. Last week, the East End medical facility announced it had gained accreditation from the Joint Commission International. This, too, is cause for celebration, and with something of a finer vintage. (A magnum of 1996 Cristal would do nicely.)

JCI is the international arm of The Joint Commission, the largest and oldest healthcare accrediting body in the United States. For patients, doctors and companies — in the U.S. or elsewhere — JCI’s gold seal of approval is, unequivocally, the gold standard for an overseas hospital.

To put it one way, JCI accreditation will reassure Cayman’s potential medical tourists that the quality of healthcare being delivered at Health City is as good or better than they could expect to receive closer to home. To put it another way, without JCI accreditation, Health City’s future as a medical tourism destination would have been much more problematic.

We at the Compass never doubted that the physicians and healthcare professionals at Cayman’s “Shetty hospital” would grade out as anything less than world-class, by anybody’s standards; however, we are even further impressed by the speed at which Health City managed to achieve this recognition.

But, just as a new medical school graduate must then plunge into an intensive residency program, the real work for Health City, now that it has accreditation, is about to start.

According to JCI, Health City has ticked all the boxes when it comes to providing healthcare. Now comes a far tougher test: of the soundness of Health City’s business model as a viable healthcare provider. The key question is whether Health City can attract enough patients from around the Western Hemisphere — not just for the current 140-bed facility, but eventually for the ultimate vision of “a 2,000-bed health city and a medical university that will become a beacon of medical education for the world,” as expressed by Health City founder Dr. Devi Shetty.

That remains to be seen, but our existing optimism is bolstered by the testimony of Health City’s marketing director Shomari Scott, who said, “The phones are ringing with providers asking to partner with us.”

Underlying our basis for belief in Health City are the people who comprise the potentially globe-changing venture: first and foremost, Dr. Shetty (and his Narayana Health group), whose life’s mission is to make quality healthcare available to all who need it, regardless of income; Health City partner Ascension Health, which runs the largest Catholic and nonprofit health system in the U.S.; the staff who work at Health City, led by head of medical services Dr. Chandy Abraham; project director Gene Thompson, who toils to ensure that Caymanians gain as much opportunity from Health City as possible; local businessman Harry Chandi, who introduced his friend Dr. Shetty to our beloved isles; and all the local enablers and facilitators of Health City, including government ministers and official liaisons.

Congratulations, Health City, on an admirable accomplishment. We trust that your success story has only just begun.



  1. We the Cayman Islands are so proud of this great event I’m sure. They have proven themselves ,now the next step for all hospitals in the world . We need the fastest, safest way from the airport to the hospital.
    Will we finally see the road East-west highway begin? Will we start?
    Maybe instead of the road we could offer a helicopter service to pickup people all over the island as well.