Temasek invests $250M in Columbia Pacific’s China operations

Columbia Pacific Management, one of the largest and fastest-growing healthcare providers in Asia, is partnering with Temasek, an investment company based in Singapore, on a joint venture that will provide China’s growing middle-class population with affordable, patient-centered care across a spectrum of healthcare and senior services.

Temasek is investing about $250 million USD in Columbia China, the China healthcare arm of Seattle’s Columbia Pacific Management, which will result in a 50/50 joint venture with Columbia Pacific. Columbia China currently has a 220-bed orthopedic hospital, two multi-specialty clinics and three senior living facilities in Shanghai and Beijing. The company is also developing three multi-specialty hospitals of 300-500 beds, in Wuxi, Jiaxing and Changzhou, as well as a 300-bed senior living facility in Ningbo and a growing pipeline of other projects across China.

The partnership with Temasek will enable Columbia China to further expand in China through acquisitions and greenfield projects.

“We’ve already built a strong team in China that has quickly expanded since we first entered the China market five years ago,” said Bee Lan Tan, Group CEO of Columbia China. “With such valued support from Temasek, we look forward to continuing to accelerate our growth.”



Pearl Human Care Pvt. Ltd., a leading health care provider, entered into a license agreement with Henry Ford Health System, headquartered in Detroit, Michigan for the establishment of Naruvi Hospitals, a super specialty hospital in Vellore, Tamil Nadu. Under the arrangement, Henry Ford Health System will provide technology license, infuse a combination of clinical best practices and provide advanced digital technology. Pearl Human Care will be responsible for creating the infrastructure and managing the operations.

To be built with an investment of INR 330 crores, the 400-bed super specialty hospital is likely to commence operations in 2019. Upon commencement of the operations, the hospital will provide employment opportunities to about 300 medical professionals and 1000 support staff. Naruvi Hospitals will deploy cutting-edge technology and globally advanced medical protocols that will transform the patient experience in India. The technical licensing arrangement covers clinical specialty, equipment selection and procurement, patient flow, key case review mechanism, quality control and building design to name a few. The state-of-the-art hospital will be managed by a team of in-house medical experts and international consultants guided by Henry Ford Health System.

“We are proud to be a part of this initiative to bring Henry Ford’s approach of high quality patient experience in a cost-effective manner in India,” says Mr. Mark Coticchia, Chief Innovation Officer for Henry Ford Health System. Mr. Coticchia’s team managed the agreement through the international arm of Henry Ford Health System Innovations. “With the huge increase in lifestyle diseases like diabetes and heart disease, families need access to affordable, sustainable care more than ever. With our medical expertise and innovative technology, Henry Ford is well positioned to help Pearl Human Care meet that need.”

Mr. G.V. Sampath, Chairman and Managing Director of Pearl Human Care, says, “We are delighted at the opportunity to work with Henry Ford Health System in setting up a world-class health care facility at Vellore.”

 “I would like to thank the Government of Tamil Nadu which under the dynamic leadership of Honourable Chief Minister Dr. J. Jayalalithaa is dedicated to providing affordable healthcare to the people of the state and for creating a conducive atmosphere for welcoming initiatives such as ours”, he adds.

In its first phase, Naruvi Hospitals will have 250 beds, with plans to increase that number to 400. The hospital will provide primary care as well as advanced specialty care in such fields as cardiology and orthopedics.

American Oncology Institute performs rare and complex HIPEC surgery for Abdominal malignancy

American Oncology Institute performs rare and complex HIPEC surgery for Abdominal malignancy

A team of surgical and medical oncologists led by Dr. Srinivas Juluri, Chief of Surgical Oncology (Minimally Invasive Surgery) at American Oncology Institute, performs the advanced Cytoreductive surgery combined with Hyperthermic Intraperitoneal Chemotherapy (CS/HIPEC), a complex procedure to treat advanced cancer on the large intestine on a patient from Kadapa. HIPEC could be the most effective therapy for select patients and could increase the survival rate manifold.

The 47-year-old female patient was suffering from an advanced cancer of the large intestine referred as peritoneal malignancy. After the surgery and HIPEC procedure, she is recovering fast and expected a longer survival than any other therapies available presently. Apart from Dr. Srinivas Juluri, Dr. Pavan Jadhav and Dr. Venu Gopal were part of the team that achieved this rare success.

Elaborating on the surgical procedure Dr. Srinivas Juluri said, “Cytoreductive surgery combined with hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy (CS/HIPEC) is an advanced complex procedure which is proven to have significant benefit in terms of survival (40-50%), with acceptable morbidity and acceptable mortality for select patients with malignancy in the abdominal area and cases of recurrence. HIPEC is more effective in terms of treatment as the patient receives a two-way chemo therapy which is more focused and reaches out to the microscopic cells in the affected area.” He further explained “This surgery took us more than 12 hours, and we have cleared the affected areas. The patient is recovering fast and we are expecting a better result than any other conventional therapies.”

Mr. Nilesh Gupta, Facility Director at AOI said, “Precision Cancer care at American Oncology Institute is delivered by a multi-disciplinary team of experts coupled with effective use of cutting edge technology. We maintain highest standards of cancer treatment by providing evidence based comprehensive care. Our doctors are adapting latest and ever changing advancements of oncology sciences to match the best of the global practices. HIPEC is one such procedure which, we are sure, will open new horizons in cancer treatment and bring new hopes in the lives of the patients and their families.”

HIPEC is a targeted treatment approach in which tumors that have spread through the lining of the abdomen are removed and then heated chemotherapy is perfused throughout the abdomen, with the intent of killing any remaining microscopic cancer cells that may be present after all visible disease has been has been surgically removed. Studies suggest that HIPEC has a potential to increase the single digit long term survival rates to 40-50% based on patient conditions. HIPEC is a futuristic approach to various malignancies like recurrent cases of ovarian cancer, colorectal cancers, rare forms of cancer in the abdomen area like PMP/ mesothelioma etc. The procedure usually takes 8-18 hours depending on the patient’s condition and helps in treating the malignancy in abdominal areas including those that have had failed standard chemotherapy and/or prior surgeries.

Along with the expertise of the doctors and the medical and surgical team, the success of this procedure is also dependent on the hi-tech machine Performer HT, imported from Italy. American Oncology Institute is the first and only hospital to have it in Hyderabad. This installation reinforces the institute’s commitment to use the best technology for precision cancer care.

This is the most advanced System for Hyperthermic Intraperitoneal and Intrapleural Perfusion as it controls the temperature in order to reproduce a suitable heating trend, with the aim to minimize thermal shock on Patient’s tissues, assuring at the same time the gradual and even thermal conditioning of the perfused region. This is the only HIPEC machine capable of doing both intraperitoneal chemotherapy as well as isolated limb and organ perfusion.

3 out of 10 Mumbai residents at high risk of heart attack; reveals Metropolis Healthcare Study

In order to understand the intensity of the heart disease, Metropolis Healthcare conducted a comprehensive study on the population of Mumbai; ahead of World Heart Day falling on September 29th 2016. The study reveals 3 out of 10 Mumbai residents are at high risk of heart attack and a marginal population is at high risk of developing cardio vascular diseases. Among the 1,35,054 lipid profile samples that were collected for a period of five years (2011 – 2015); an alarming 33.14% of patients in the age group of 20-80 years have reported dyslipidaemia and also revealed:

  • 33.14% samples reported high Total Cholesterol level
  • 34.44% have high Triglyceride level
  • 40% of the population have extremely low HDL levels, the good cholesterol and over 53% have less than desirable levels
  • 30.68% have borderline high or high LDL levels

Dr. Deepak Sanghavi, Deputy Chief Of Lab, Metropolis Healthcare Ltd said, “The incidence and prevalence of cardiovascular disease has been steadily rising in India. The major factors attributed to this are changes in lifestyle, lack of exercise, consumption of non-nutritious food, increased stress level, smoking and irrational use of tobacco. Prolonged working hours, hectic commute and growing incidence of obesity along with sedentary lifestyle is also one of the reasons for Mumbai’s population to be more prone to heart ailments.”


High blood cholesterol and triglyceride –Usually there are no signs or symptoms. People with high blood cholesterol level have higher chances of developing cardiac risk. This results in development of plaques in the arteries.


Plaques are basically a substance made of fat, cholesterol which clogs the arteries depriving heart and brain from getting good amount of oxygen; this increases the chances of heart attack or stroke. The higher level of HDL (sometimes called good cholesterol) in the blood lowers the chances of developing heart disease.


The general perception is that heart disease is more prevalent in men, but women are equally at risk of developing cardiovascular disease. The main contributing factor is being unhealthy lifestyle, inappropriate diet and physical inactivity. Smoking and diabetes have also emerged as major factors responsible for causing cardiovascular diseases.

Dolphin RFID and Esbee Dynamed join hands to bring Automated Identification Technology for Medical Devices to India

Dolphin RFID Pvt. Ltd.  (Dolphin), one of World’s recognised RFID solution providers and Esbee Dynamed (Esbee), a leading provider of surgical instruments and medical devices to prestigious hospitals across India have joined hands to leverage the power of RFID  for the vital  healthcare sector. The specific areas identified for immediate implementation are in the areas of surgical instruments and medical device management. Through the collaboration, Esbee will, in association with Dolphin,  bring in to India best practices like the US F.D.A’s new unique device identification (UDI) tracking . By tagging surgical instruments and medical devices, hospitals will be able to track vital devices used during surgical procedures in a matter of seconds leading to  improved patient safety. Keeping a track of other important medical devices to enable immediate access during emergencies will also be facilitated by using RFID.

As a part of advanced good practices, different classes of medical devices now include a permanent mark containing a unique identifier and manufacturing information. Healthcare is among the largest spenders in RFID technology and practices such as UDI will become a regulatory mandate in India as well in the years to come as is being done in US at present.

The global hospital asset management market segment commanded 89.7% of the global healthcare asset management market in 2015, projected to grow at a CAGR of more than 35.8% from 2015 to 2020. Equipment management commands the largest share of the healthcare asset management market and it is set to grow further with regulations such as UDI and the enhanced use of RFID in tracking medical devices and surgical equipment. Improved Patient Care is another aspect waiting to be immensely improved using RFID.

Commenting on the development, Commodore SK Sawhney, President and CEO, Dolphin RFID said, “Healthcare will be among the biggest spends due to an ageing population and lifestyle changes. With proper RFID tags on all medical devices and surgical equipment complemented by our own RFID readers, Dolphin and Esbee will enable hospitals to ensure that right devices travel from the autoclaving unit to operation theatres at the right time and enable saving of hundreds of dollars of clinical time per minute and more importantly, human lives. It will also enable to enhance efficiency by tracking and managing of critical assets and enabling to administer better healthcare by RFID tracking of patient’s treatment and records.”

Expressing his views on the collaboration, Aditya Bawa, Director, Esbee Dynamed, said, “The collaboration with Dolphin will further strengthen our commitment of providing the best medical equipment and also bringing the best technology to Indian hospitals. With RFID tracking of medical devices and surgical equipment, hospital assets and patient’s records, there would be a significant enhancement in administering healthcare services. This collaboration will enable us to take Indian healthcare to a new level and prepare us for medical tourism as well, thereby making India a preferred destination for healthcare services recognised by the best medical insurance companies.”

Once the medical devices and surgical equipment management is empowered by RFID, Dolphin and Esbee also endeavour to leverage this technology in areas such as patient management (both in-patient and out-patient), bed tracking, asset tracking and files and record management as also vehicle management. Dolphin has successfully completed projects in healthcare asset management for Tata Medical Centre at Kolkatta and Apollo Hospital in Delhi and is in advanced stages of discussions with other major chains in India and abroad.

Leading MedTech companies form Medical Technology Association of India (MTaI) to propel growth in the sector

Founded in India with an aim to accelerate the growth of medical technology sector, Medical Technology Association of India (MTaI – Pronounced Em-tai) mainly represents key research based multinational companies with significant investments in the country. In a short time of its formation, the association has taken vital steps to underpin the importance of the sector for a Healthy India.


As per Mr Pavan Choudary, Director General, MTaI, “The Medical devices industry has huge potential to not only be able to significantly contribute to GDP of the country but also to the dream of Healthy India. The key industry players in India that include global and indigenous manufacturers and importers, have together contributed to growth of the sector.”


“MTaI recognizes the efforts made by the Government for the development of the MedTech sector. We are proud and simultaneously grateful for the fact that the PMO is directly nurturing it, that the Department of Pharmaceuticals, MOHFW, Niti Aayog, Ministry of Commerce, DIPP & CDSCO are all working in a spirit of inclusiveness which is ensuring that each responsible voice gets a hearing & due consideration. We thank the offices of Mr Ananth Kumar, Minister of Chemicals & Fertilizers & Mr J.P. Nadda, Minister of Health & Family Welfare and their Secretaries who are studying the various nuances of this sector to take informed decisions,” added Pavan.


Current data culled by MTaI reveals that investment in the medical devices sector shot up to US$ 161 million (in calendar year 2015) from US$ 60 million (Average annual yield) post the announcement of 100% FDI under automatic route in India in January 2015.


“Progress on the FDI front shows a clear jump of US$ 101 million in less than a year’s time, (US $ 161 million in 2015 over the average annual yield of @ US$ 60 Million). Though this   is yet not proportionate to the potential of the Medical Technology sector; it is a sign what positive policies can do. During the same time the Pharmaceutical sector, Medtech’s BIG brother, which usually brings nearly 15 times of the FDI brought in by Medtech I  clocked an incremental FDI of only US$ 161 million over its average annual yield (just 1.6 times of Medetech this time!). Given appropriate thrust and direction, the trajectory of growth can be steeper, and this growth will not only significantly contribute to GDP of the country but also to the dream of a Healthy India. We seek the Government’s help and support for a predictable, consistent and coherent policy & regulatory regime for Make in India, FDI & Business in general in the sector,” Pavan elaborated.


Stressing the need for a coherent & nuanced policy which ensures that technologies which will take much time to be import substituted are not made dearer to the patient, Milan Rao, CEO of GE Healthcare India, said, “India’s medical devices sector is heavily underpenetrated with access limited to larger towns and cities. A majority of the market, especially of high-end medical equipment is imported. These equipments are critical in improving the health outcomes of millions of people, saving scores of lives and helping others lead healthier lives. A higher import tax rate will only make these products more expensive, increasing the financial burden on the healthcare system and reducing access further.”


“High-end medical technologies require many years of development and technical skills, and GE is already committed to developing such an ecosystem in India as part of its ‘Make in India, for India and the World’ efforts. A balanced approach where we address near term priorities of access and availability while simultaneously building the local ecosystem for the long term will help the medical devices sector flourish in India and ensure healthcare for all,” added Milan.


MTaI believes that global players in this sector have contributed significantly by bringing basic and advanced medical technologies to address patient needs in India, by investing in training of medical fraternity and thus creating the market, by bringing FDI and technology, by entering manufacturing due to consistent signals received from the Government so far.


And that, it is also due to the ready availability of state of the art medical technology, that healthcare outcomes of many of our hospitals compare with the best in the world.


The association also appreciates the efforts of the indigenous manufacturers who have contributed significantly to the sector through innovation and development of low cost basic devices and earning foreign exchange through exports. The policy makers and regulators need to nurture both, domestic and international groups in such a way that the ‘Make in India’ program continues for those sub sectors or product categories where a high level of import substitution of an acceptable quality has been obtained or can be obtained quickly while the technological & financial ecosystems get built for the balance sub sectors. This approach will help the Government foster this high gestation period sector, which needs deep pockets and substantive technology transfers continually.

A revolutionary test to reduce the number of unnecessary INVASIVE prenatal screening tests in India.

Is it time for India to use the latest technology developments to help prevent pregnant women from undergoing unnecessary invasive prenatal tests?

 The preliminary reports of a first of its kind, validated study on Non-invasive prenatal screening test (NIPT) on Indian population does strongly suggest that it helps obstetricians and pregnant women across age groups to better manage their pregnancy at a very early stage.

Dr. I.C. Verma and Dr. RatnaPuri from Sir Ganga Ram Hospital were the principal investigators of the study. The study sponsored by Bengaluru based MedGenome and their partner was conducted over the last ten months in collaboration with ten institutions across India to provide meaningful insights into the prenatal screening and diagnostic practices. Blood samples of pregnant women certified as high or intermediate risk by the conventional serum screening method were collected from across the country.

 The NIPT test was conducted on the samples at MedGenome’s state-of- the-art laboratory in Bengaluru. The study’s preliminary results have been extremely encouraging on the positive impact that NIPT can have on the pregnancies in India. The initial results indicate that over 96% of pregnant women categorized as high risk in the traditional screening could potentially avoid the invasive procedures” If we consider these initial results of this study against the number of births in India each year (over 25 million births), the number of pregnant women who might be undergoing the invasive tests unnecessarily are extremely significant. A detailed report of the study will be released very soon.

 The initiative is also important at the wake of the latest statement issued by the American College of Medical Genetics and Genomics (ACMG) very recently, suggesting that “Non-invasive prenatal testing can replace conventional screening for Down Syndrome, Patau syndrome, Edward syndrome across all maternal age spectrums for a continuum of gestational ages beginning from 9 – 10 weeks gestation”.

 ACMG is the most recent medical society to advocate for broader adoption of NIPT, including recommendations that encourage NIPT as the optimal initial screening test for all pregnant women, regardless of age or other risk factors. These latest guidelines reflect the growing consensus among genetic experts that the clinical benefits of NIPT are far superior to the existing conventional screening options, including Maternal Serum Screening (MSS)

 We believe that tests such as NIPT can change the way the invasive procedures on pregnancies are administered in our country, providing the obstetrician, pregnant women and her family with insights to make informed decisions and manage the baby’s health better” Mr Sam Santhosh, Chairman, MedGenome opined “Recommendations by the highly regarded and scientific organizations such as ACMG speak volumes about the benefits offered by NIPT

 The NIPT screening examines fetal DNA in the mother’s blood to assess whether a developing baby is at high risk for having an abnormality in the chromosomes. It’s extremely simple. Unlike an invasive procedure such as Amniocentesis, where a needle is inserted into the mother’s womb (amniotic sack) to collect amniotic fluid, NIPT does not involve any invasive procedure of the womb. All that NIPT needs is a

blood sample drawn from the mother’s arm to screen for trisomy 21 (Down’s syndrome), trisomy 18 (Edwards syndrome), trisomy 13 (Patau syndrome) and select X & Y chromosome abnormalities, such as monosomy X (Turner syndrome). The NIPT screening can be performed from as early as the 9th week of gestation. In contrast to traditional prenatal genetic testing like chorionic villus sampling and amniocentesis which are invasive tests and NIPT does not pose any risk to the fetus.

Apollo Spectra Hospitals partner with Quadio Labs

Apollo Spectra Hospitals, part of Apollo Health and Lifestyle Ltd. (AHLL), one of the largest players in the healthcare segment, for the first time has partnered with Pune based hearing health care provider Quadio Labs for their maiden telemedicine services. Together they have introduced net audiometry services at Apollo Spectra Hospitals located in Mumbai at Tardeo and Chembur. Through this service, patients can walk into the mentioned Apollo Spectra Hospitals or avail audiometry services via Quadio’s audiologist over the internet. Apollo Spectra Hospitals shares a similar vision as Quadio Labs and aims to provide improved access for hearing care through innovative technological solutions like net audiometry.

 Net audiometry empowers audiologists to break the physical barriers of a brick and mortar hearing clinic and reach patients across geographies to conduct audiometry test for hearing impaired individuals. In a country of over 1.2 billion, hearing loss affects over 10% of the population and is the second most debilitating disability in India. With less than 2000 practicing audiologists in India, Quadio’s solution of net audiometry aims to reduce the distance between hearing impaired individuals and audiologists. As part of this partnership, Apollo Spectra Hospitals will also be reaching to Institutions like Schools, Traffic Policemen, Bus Drivers etc via net audiometry to help detect any cases of congenital or other adult hearing loss and increase awareness.

 How Net Audiometry works:

An internet connection is established between the patient location and remote audiologist. The hearing test is performed over the internet using Quadio’s Quadiometer by the audiologist. Post the test, a report is generated and a hard copy of the report can be printed by the patient at his location. A counsel on the report and recommended treatment is then discussed via video conferencing.

 Speaking about the association with Apollo Spectra Hospitals, Neeraj Dotel, CEO, Quadio Labs said, “We are excited about our association with Apollo Spectra Hospitals for net audiometry services. This is a big step for telemedicine and we hope this partnership helps in improving the hearing care facilities for hearing impaired individuals across the country. I am happy to let you know that we will be expanding our net audiometry services to other smaller cities with the support of a reliable partner like Apollo Spectra Hospitals”

 Anubhav Prashant, Regional Business Head, Apollo Spectra Hospitals said, “Access to hearing assessment has been a major concern and need for audiologic services is significant worldwide and especially in India. Apollo Spectra’s evolution is guided by a ‘patient-centric’ approach, in line with this philosophy we have come together to work closely and bring tele-audiometry to communities who did not have access to the services. Through this association, we aim to reach out to both children and adults. We aim to screen more than 15000 people over the period of six months as a part of this initiative”.

Saifee inaugurates first of its kind LASIK suite in India

Saifee inaugurates first of its kind LASIK suite in India

Mumbai’s renowned private hospital, Saifee inaugurated a state of art LASIK suite on Sunday, August 14, 2016. This suite is brightly colored keeping in mind with the hospital’s interior and will house the latest Microscan Visum 500 Excimer machine. This advanced instrument has been specially imported from Moscow, Russia and will be used in conducting laser eye surgeries exclusively at Saifee’s Ophthalmology Department.

Saifee Hospital is the first hospital in India to procure this state-of-the-art LASIK equipment. The Microscan Visum 500 Excimer is a user friendly machine with applications such as Advanced Surface Ablation (PRK), Topo-linked CUSTOM LASIK, Wavefront-guided Ablation, Therapeutic PTK and Wavefront-optimized LASIK.

LASIK team inaugurates the suite at Saifee

Speaking on the occasion, Dr. Mehmood Hussein, Head of the Dept. of Ophthalmology at Saifee Hospital says, “At Saifee, it is our constant endeavour to use latest medical equipments to provide the best treatment at affordable to every patient. With the newly introduced LASIK suite, we are sure to conduct maximum cases each day.

The LASIK suite will be fully functional by September 6, 2016 at Saifee Hospital and will be largely used to conduct laser eye surgery to treat near-sightedness, far-sightedness and astigmatism.  This is pain-free procedure and usually completed within 15 minutes for both eyes resulting in improved vision. The machine is user friendly and the maintenance is comparatively easier.

India’s First Dedicated Medical Device Park

The foundation stone for India’s first exclusive medical device manufacturing park – Andhra Pradesh MedTech Zone – was laid today at Nadupur village of Pedda Gantyada Mandal in Vishakhapatnam by Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Shri Chandrababu Naidu in the presence of Union Ministers Shri Venkaih Naidu, Shri Ananth Kumar, Andhra Health Minister Shri Kameini Srinivas, WHO Representative Mr Henk Benkedam, representatives of Indian medical device industry including Shri Rajiv Nath and a galaxy of other notable personalities.

AMTZ, the 270-acre exclusive manufacturing zone is the result of MoU signed between the state government and AiMeD nine months back with a view to promote manufacturing of hi-tech and high-end medical devices within the country with a view to encourage domestic manufacturing, reduce India’s humungous import dependency in medical devices, generate quality employment and bring down overall healthcare cost for average citizen. The exclusive tech zone will have the state-of-the-art and the best global facilities for R&D, manufacturing, testing, export & regulatory facilitations and logistics.

“We will reduce the cost of healthcare with local production of Medical Devices , We will create common infrastructure for you – the local Industry of world class and assure you of all clearances within 15 days,” said Chandarababu Naidu.

“The launch of AMTZ is the dawn of a new era in the history of Medical Devices and Electronic industry in India. We at AiMeD are extremely happy that our efforts have fructified into this momentous occasion. We profusely thank Chandrababu Naidu and Central Government for sharing our vision and wishing India to be among the top 5 medical device manufacturing hubs of the world. We at AiMeD applaud Mr Naidu’s leadership and his teams for taking steps to turn this into a reality within 9 months of our initial discussions with him last November,” said Rajiv Nath, Forum Coordinator, AiMeD.