Dr. Prathap C Reddy said at an interview with the Business Standard that the potential for India to become a global healthcare hub was fast unfolding due to the global economic slowdown.
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BS Reporter / Chennai/ Hyderabad August 27, 2011.
Apollo Hospitals Group chairman Prathap C Reddy on Friday said the potential for India to become a global healthcare hub was fast unfolding due to the global economic slowdown.
The group’s hospitals are expected to receive 75,000 overseas patients this year as compared with 60,000 last year, which itself is a testimony to the grow-ing trend of healthcare tourism in the country, according to him.
Responding to a question on any negative impact of the global slowdown on revenues and overall expansion plans, Reddy said things had been quite different and positive. “In fact, I am hoping to surpass the expansion target this year” he said. Having a total strength of close to 9,000 beds under its wing, the healthcare major is planning to add 1,000 more beds by the end of the current financial year.
Among the new projects, Apollo is currently in the process of finalising the location at the port city of Chittagong in Bangladesh to set up a 250-bed hospital with an investment of Rs 120 crore.
On capital raising plans for the group’s retail foray, Reddy said he was awaiting the Government of India’s policy the on retail sector.
Apollo today launched a new technology – High Intensity Focused Ultrasound (HIFU), an image guided non-invasive treatment for uterine fibroids in women developed by Philips Healthcare here and is planning to install similar facilities in the remaining five centres in the country soon.
According to Krishna Kumar, vice president & business, Philips Healthcare, Apollo is the first one to have this facility in the country. It is a case of existing diagnostic technologies being converged and transformed to perform a therapeutic function, according to him. Other therapeutic applications including treating breast and prostate cancer are also expected from HIFU in the near future, he said.