And Barbados TODAY understands that the 10 acres of prime commercial estate in Welches, St. Thomas where the project was to have been located is likely to change ownership for millions of dollars.
It was about six years ago when plans for the medical facility, whose investors within the company Project Care (Barbados) Inc. included prominent Barbadian businessman Sir Kyffin Simpson and English expatriate resident in Barbados Edward Healey went public.
But while plans for the 74 bed multi-specialty hospital were pursued at least up to the 2010 and India’s Apollo Hospitals Group, which is involved in medical tourism, hired to handle the development and eventual management of the facility a decision was taken to shelve it.
Today, sources said there were plans to switch from the hospital project, which had received approval from the Town & Country Development Planning Office, to another venture, details of which could not be ascertained.
It was confirmed, however, that there was a lucrative offer on the table to purchase the Welches land and an application had been submitted to the TCDPO for change of use.
At the time when details of the previously planned hospital were disclosed there was the expectation that local doctors, nurses and other medical support staff would among approximately 420 people hired to work there.
It was to have featured 74 in-patient beds in 62 rooms broken down into two suites, eight deluxe rooms, 40 private rooms and 12 semi-private rooms; and a 24-hour accident and emergency department with a six-bed emergency bay.
The property would have also included a 24-hour pharmacy, 24-hour labs, a ten-bay renal dialysis centre, cardiac catheterisation laboratory with two recovery bays, three state-of-the-art operating theatres with a sterile processing unit and eight recovery bays, 20 critical care beds for medical, surgical, neuro and neo-natal patients, and a birthing centre, among other facilities.
Today, sources in the medical field speculated that the demise of the previously pursued Welches hospital could be linked to the emergence other players doing similar ventures. American investors within the American World Clinics brand are preparing to start construction of a similar health facility at the site of the former St. Joseph Hospital in Ashton Hall, St. Peter.
Work there is likely to start this year and is also project to cost $200 million. Just last week construction magnate and real estate developer Sir Charles Williams announced plans for the construction of a $600 million hospital he said would likely to create up to 1,400 jobs.
Sir Charles also said the facility would primarily be a cosmetic and recovery complex, and would include cottages where patients would convalesce. (SC)