UWI joins the Bioprist medical city | Business

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Partnership is taking shape between the University of the West Indies and Bioprist which will see a section of the medical tourism resort the company is developing in Montego Bay become the headquarters of the West Jamaica campus of the UWI School of Medicine.

Bioprist Institute of Medical Sciences, BIMS, incorporated in 2016 as an independent subsidiary of the Bioprist Group, is building a US $ 17 million ($ 2.6 billion) facility that is part of a larger $ 48 billion project. dollars undertaken by Dr. Guna Muppuri, the primary owner of Bioprist.

Muppuri says that for the past five years, he has worked on plans and sought financing in the form of equity and debt to start the medical training and health tourism center near the coast.

With loan funding from the National Commercial Bank and some secured funding from VM Wealth Management, work has started on the construction of a temporary location for the medical school.

Muppuri previously revealed at a Jampro forum in early May that he had already raised more than $ 1.1 billion for the medical complex project.

Immediate plans include the reallocation of a building in Ironshore in Montego Bay that was originally intended for the head office of the Bioprist group. The medical city project will be built on other land acquired nearby.

“Work is proceeding at a rapid pace and we are now awaiting phase two of the funding, which represents an additional $ 8 million, or about $ 1.2 billion …”, said Muppuri when signing a memorandum. agree with UWI regarding the medical campus.

Bioprist has applied to the Jamaica Special Economic Zone Authority for the medical center to be accredited as a Special Economic Zone.

Already delayed from the original 2021 completion schedule, in part due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Muppuri is targeting the deployment of the medical training center for the start of next year.

On Tuesday, BIMS and Grand Ridge Med City, as the entire development will be called, received the Imprimatur and support from UWI. UWI Director Mona Professor Dale Webber says at this point their agreement covers setting up a team to flesh out the details of the partnership and incorporate the needs of the university into planning and implementation. implementation of the project.

The Bioprist-UWI deal appears to have been negotiated and led by state investment and promotion agency Jampro, whose president, Diane Edwards, hosted the signing of the memorandum of understanding at the agency’s headquarters in Kingston. Industry, Investment and Trade Minister Audley Shaw and Minister of State Norman Dunn joined the event via Zoom, while Dr Horace Chang, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of National Security and MP for North West St James, where the project is located, also declared his support for the initiative.

The BIMS program will begin with the training of physicians, but will later expand to include dentistry, nursing, and chiropractic health. A 300-bed teaching and research hospital is part of the concept which, Muppuri points out, fits naturally into the upper end of the spectrum of the knowledge process outsourcing industry.

“The current COVID-19 pandemic has had a devastating and negative effect on human resources, especially healthcare professionals, and the functional healthcare infrastructure around the world, including here in Jamaica,” said said the businessman.

“Creating a technological frontier in healthcare that attracts global brands and talent resilient to external shocks is at the heart of the business model,” he said upon signing.

huntley.medley@gleanerjm.com


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