German hospital being built in Abu Dhabi

 

A 100-bed multispeciality hospital staffed by German doctors and nurses is being built in Khalifa City and is expected to be finished by the end of 2010.

Its operator, German General Hospital, has also built a medical centre in Al Rowdah and brought in 80 percent of its staff from Germany and Western Europe. The US$50-million facility will focus on three main areas: cardiology, orthopaedics and vascular diseases.

Markus Eulig, chief financial officer of the group, estimates that about 100,000 people travel from the UAE each year to receive medical treatment in Germany.

“For the first time in the Gulf, qualified German healthcare run by a team of medical experts from Germany will be available to the UAE and GCC residents. The hospital in Khalifa City will provide a service for those who feel an affinity for German medical care so they do not have to travel overseas,” he explained.

The Al Rowdah German Medical Centre is scheduled to open next month and will offer a broad range of services, with specialities in internal medicine, paediatrics, orthopaedics and radiology.

Both facilities are being funded by Shedlin Middle East Health Care, which is regulated by the German financial authorities. The design and planning for both the medical centre and general hospital have also been carried out by German architects, Woernerundpartner, who specialise in hospital and health-care projects.

The hospital and clinic will be operated by Klinikum Offenbach, whose main hospital in Germany has around 1,000 beds and treats 33,500 patients each year.

The project’s UAE partner, Abdulla Abdul al Fahim, said the team did not want to close the market to Germany but simply give people in the UAE, and further afield, the option to receive treatment closer to home. He noted: “If people prefer to receive German treatment and be cared for in the same way as they would be in Germany, they will be able to do that here.”

German medicine has an outstanding reputation worldwide. Quality of care, cleanliness, medical technology and innovation are all unsurpassed anywhere in the world. But there are three problems: high cost, need for a visa, and language difficulties. Some in Germany see inbound medical tourism from the Middle East as a short-term business only, and that longer-term it is better to invest in hospitals and clinics in the Middle East.

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