Max, Rockland, Apollo & Fortis in race for UPs public healthcare

Written by Deepa Jainani | Lucknow | Updated: May 2 2010, 07:46am hrs
The battle for providing cutting-edge, integrated healthcare delivery system, replete with international standard benchmarking and patient-centric approach, which was so far limited to the urban landscape, is all set to move to a newer turf. World-renowned healthcare powerhouses such as Apollo Hospitals, Fortis Heathcare, Max Healthcare and Rockland will clash for a bigger pie in the healthcare services, away from the swanky metros to the dust-laden villages of four districts of Uttar Pradesh, where the management, upgrade, operation and maintenance of public health service facilities have been opened up for the private sector. This is for the first time in the country that any state government has opened up the public healthcare service infrastructure at the district level to the private sector.

The four healthcare powerhouses have been short-listed out of 12 companies, for the request for proposal (RFP) stage for far-flung Basti, Allahabad, Ferozabad and Kanpur districts. A pre-bid meet is to be held in New Delhi on May 12.

The project, which envisages an estimated investment of Rs 200 crore, will entail the upkeep of four district hospitals, eight community health centres, 23 primary health centres and 210 sub centres. While Apollo Hospitals has emerged as the strongest bidder, having bid for all the four districts, Rockland has bid for Ferozabad and Kanpur City, Fortis for Basti and Kanpur and Max for Kanpur only.

The selected developer would upgrade the selected district hospitals, community health centres, primary health centres and sub centres to bring them on par with the prescribed standards, and would manage, maintain and operate them for 33 years, an official of the state health department told FE. The UP government will provide the annual viability gap, which will also be the bid parameter. Meanwhile, the government is still trying to workout the concession and shareholders agreement.

After the private partner is identified through the competitive bidding process, it will form a special purpose company (SPC) with the Uttar Pradesh government holding 11% and having one of its nominees on the board of directors, in lieu of the infrastructure that the state would allow the SPC to use. The eligibility criteria for a private partner is a turnover of Rs 100 crore for the last three years and a networth of Rs 100 crore with experience of running a 100-bed hospital.