MP Shah Hospital eyes expansion with Sh1bn IFC funding

The MP Shah Hospital in Parklands, Nairobi. PHOTO | FILE
The MP Shah Hospital in Parklands, Nairobi. PHOTO | FILE 

MP Shah Hospital is set to receive Sh1 billion ($10 million) from the International Finance Corporation (IFC) to boost its ongoing expansion to meet growing demand.

The Parklands-based hospital, Nairobi, will use the funds from the World Bank’s private lending arm to build a six-storey building to house new oncology and physiotherapy clinics and surgical wards.

MP Shah’s chief executive officer Anup Das said the new wing will be fully operational by the end of next year. Its 96 new beds will raise the hospital’s total capacity to 306.

“The upcoming building will have new oncology and physiotherapy clinics and wards with state-of-the-art equipment,” Mr Das told the Business Daily in a telephone interview.

“Depending on the pace of construction, we will be opening one floor at a time but we anticipate that the building will be fully operational by the end of next year.”

IFC’s capital injection complements an ongoing Sh2.1 billion ($21.1 million) five-year expansion and refurbishment plan that the hospital initiated in 2012 and which has already seen it build two other buildings of six floors each.

The two buildings, which MP Shah fully occupied in November last year, host adult and paediatric intensive care unit wards, an operating theatre, a cardiac unit as well as a new oxygen plant.

MP Shah Hospital is owned by the Social Services League (also referred to as MP Shah Trust), a non-profit organisation that was founded in the 1930s by prominent philanthropists.

“The IFC is proposing a senior loan investment to the MP Shah Trust of up to $10 million for upgrades to the hospital which will be used for the construction and equipping of the new physiotherapy building,” IFC said in disclosures on the funding.

“The proposed $21.1 million investment programme will transform (MP Shah) into a tertiary hospital with an expanded service offering in line with the demand for quality healthcare services in Kenya and East Africa.”

Aggressive expansion of hospitals has been linked to a rising spend on healthcare by the country’s middle class as government hospitals grapple with congestion and frequent strikes.

This has seen charitable trusts and private equity firms increase their investments in the healthcare market with a view to promoting social welfare and earning returns.

Gertrude’s Children’s Hospital in 2013 invested Sh500 million in setting up a new building at its Muthaiga branch, raising its bed capacity to 103 from the previous 83.

Nairobi Hospital is in the process of implementing an expansion plan where about Sh10 billion will be used to set up 16 specialised treatment units covering mostly kidney and lung ailments.

The hospital anticipates to buy 750 additional beds (double its present capacity) in the next four years and set up several satellite branches across the country.

The Aga Khan University Hospital, Avenue Group, Coptic Hospital, and AAR Health Services have launched major expansion plans seeking a slice of the millions of shillings Kenyans spend on specialised treatment abroad.

Public institutions like Pumwani Maternity Hospital, Mbagathi Level Four Hospital and Kenyatta National Hospital have initiated multi-billion shilling expansion projects to keep up with their privately-owned counterparts.

“At the moment, about 85 per cent of beds are occupied at any given time. This growing demand, and the need to add more specialised services and advanced technology is the reason we are expanding the hospital,” said Mr Das.