KENYA: Doctor targets foreign-bound patients with Sh1bn hospital

June 2019 Businessdaily; Located in the posh Nyali suburb in Mombasa County is Premier Hospital, a private health facility that seeks to attract Kenyan patients who would otherwise seek medical services abroad.

Dr Fardosa Ahmed opened the hospital with an investment of Sh1 billion, intending to tap into the medical tourism market at the Coast.

“My investment into this building and all the equipment’s in it was Sh1 billion as equity I acquired from shareholders,” she said in an interview with the Business Daily.

To offer the medical tourism services, Premier Hospital has partnered with various consultants in the country to venture into the field by offering the best health care.

The CEO went to Makini Primary School. Her high school education took place in Loreto Convent Valley Road and her higher education was at the University of Nairobi where she graduated with a Bachelor of Medicine and Surgery degree.

The 33-year-old had a piece of land in Nyali which she utilised to build the eight-storey hospital complex that was initially meant to be an office complex, a decision she says has had a lifetime impact on her.

Her passion in wanting people to achieve the best medical care saw her open the facility that is now Premier Hospital.

Dr Ahmed said her choice of opening a hospital instead of an office complex was as a result of the fact that she is a doctor by profession and she wanted to explore her passion apart from opening up a business that would benefit people around her.

“This is a tourism resort city hence the need to venture into this field that will also help Kenyans get the best services and stem them from travelling abroad for treatment,” said one of the coast region’s youngest CEO.

The choice of location was dictated by the alarming rate of road accident victims, as as well as patients suffering stroke and heart attacks. But it has also been a disadvantage since most people associate Nyali with wealth.

“Some people in Mombasa have the perception that the private hospital is only used for a certain class of people. Our goal is for Mombasa to become a destination for medical tourism, but we are also trying to get rid of the perception that our hospital is solely for the rich,” she said.

While rooting for universal healthcare, the businesswoman says: “We are in the era of and one way we can do that is focusing on the satisfaction of our patients.”

The private hospital boasts of having major insurance covers like Jubilee, among others. The doctor clarified that most insurers are on board and it is also accredited by the National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF).

Someone who has NHIF cover can access surgical services, CT Scan, Ultrasound, dialysis, inpatient and outpatient services.

The new hospital has a Paediatric Outpatient Centre, Surgical Suite, Cardiac Suite, Orthopedics Suite, Women’s Suite, Oncology Suite, Sectional Specialty Suite, Dialysis Suite, Day Chemotherapy Suite, Minor Theatre, Day Surgery and Endoscopy Suite.

It has not been all rosy, the hospitals proprietor says adding that is through God’s grace, perseverance, hard work and determination that she has remained afloat and achieved her dreams.

One of the ways that the hospital tries to reach its goal of attaining medical tourism is keeping up with the upcoming innovations in the medical industry.

The CEO is a firm believer in using innovation as a tool to achieve better healthcare and as such the hospital has a CT Scan, ultrasound, X-ray and a laparoscopy tower that is used for minimally invasive surgery. All her equipment are international brands that she bought locally and they are able to be serviced in the country as well.

The medic says her facility tries to minimise using open surgery with the use of a laparoscopy tower, which reduces the recovery time of patients.

“I love my job as a doctor and for my patients to have the best healthcare they need the best facility so that is what I try to achieve by keeping up with all the new medical trends,” she said.

The hospital, which has a 70-bed capacity with a staff of 200 employees, opened its doors on November 24, 2017.

The CEO narrates how the hospital has grown gradually from serving three to 10 patients in a day during their first year of opening and the current 120 to 130 patients daily, saying had she given up she would not have achieved her dreams.

Dr Ahmed also said the presence of Premier Hospital has also made it possible for businesses like restaurants to spring up in the vicinity.

“Apart from offering employment opportunities in our hospital, I am glad to say locals have opened up businesses because of the level of traffic that we receive from patients every day,” she said.

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