Caribbean Medical Tourism Blossoming from all Corners

Interests in the development of medical tourism in the Caribbean are abound. Business stands at different stages depending on which island. Some have signed letters of interests are still busy with the process while others have broken ground.


Health City Cayman Islands is well underway and the 140-bed medical tourism hospital is scheduled to open in February 2014. The aforementioned is a partnership between Dr. Devi Shetty’s India-based Narayana Hrudalaya and Ascension Health Alliance, the latter, the largest private non-profit health network in the United States of America.

The Cayman Islands Health City is to grow up to a 2000 bed facility over 15-years, an investment of sum two billion US Dollars. It would be the third-largest hospital in the U.S. attracting more than one million stay-over medical tourists per year.

The 140-bed medical tourism hospital is forecasted to attract annually over 85,000 stay-over medical tourists per year according Government officials back in 2010. Imagine Sint Maarten attracting an additional 100,000 stay-over medical tourists per year, what a spin-off this would have for our national economy.

Jamaica signed a Memorandum of Understanding in February 2013 with a U.S. North Carolina-based group of medical professionals who envision a US$170 million facility, 50-75 bed hospital expanding to 200 beds specializing in plastic and cosmetic surgery, bariatric services and dental procedures.

Barbados in June 2011 signed a lease with American World Clinics entailing an investment of US$100 million that includes revamping a former private hospital. The facility would have a 50-bed capacity. This facility is expected to open in summer of 2015. This same group in April 2013 visited The Bahamas to share ideas of a US$200-US$250 million medical tourism facility for that country.

Smaller medical tourism facilities have been sprouting up in other parts of the Caribbean such as the Turks and Caicos and in St. Kitts & Nevis where ground was broken in July 2012 for a US$15 million 22-bed facility offering elective surgeries.

Grenada is also tapping into the medical tourism market with a project valued at US$446 million. Interests have also been shown in developing a facility in Trinidad & Tobago.

There are great interests throughout the region for the development of medical tourism, and Caribbean countries are opening their doors and signing up more today than before because of the opportunities that exist.

Country Sint Maarten’s move into the medical tourism field would lead to an economic impetus and the creation of job opportunities during the construction phase as well as once the facility becomes operational. The time is now.

Roddy Heyliger