Updated July. 11, 2014 05:04
Seoul National University Hospital said on Thursday that it won a service contract for Sheikh Khalifa Specialist Hospital, a royal hospital in the United Arab Emirates. It is the first Korean hospital to sign a service contract with a general hospital in other country.
Sheikh Khalifa finally chose Seoul National University Hospital as a service provider at the end of last month, said Oh Byung-hee, president and CEO of Seoul National University Hospital, in a press conference at the Sejong Government Complex on Thursday. Its trust in Koreas medicine and medical information system seems to have significantly affected the decision.
Sheikh Khalifa Specialist Hospital, located in Ras Al Khaimah off the northern coast of the United Arab Emirates, has 248 beds and is specialized in cancer, cardiology, children, neurological diseases, emergency and rehabilitation medicine. The hospital plans to increase the size to 400 beds to become the largest hospital in the country.
Seoul National University Hospital submitted a letter of intention to the UAE Ministry of Presidential Affairs in September last year and beat many prestigious university hospitals from across the world to be selected. Among the competitors were Stanford Hospital & Clinics and the Johns Hopkins Hospital in the U.S., Kings College Hospital in the U.K. and the Charité University Hospital in Germany.
Oh said, We will provide a wide range of services from medical service and recruiting medical staff to building a hospital information system with the budget of over one trillion won (about 986 million U.S. dollars) from the United Arab Emirates for the next five years after signing the contract there in August The service fee alone is estimated to be around seven billion won (6.9 million won) to eight billion won (7.8 million dollars) per year. Seoul National University Hospital plans to send Koreans to staff 15 to 20 percent of the UAE hospitals headcount.
Health and Welfare Minister Moon Hyung-pyo who attended the press conference on Thursday said, Hopefully, this contract could upgrade medical service in the United Arab Emirates and also encourage Korean medicine to gain a foothold in the world.