WASHINGTON, D.C., April 7, 2000 — The
International Finance Corporation is investing to improve healthcare in
the Dominican Republic, building a network of private hospitals that will
set new standards of care for the local population and provide much needed
hospital infrastructure to support the tourist industry.
In its first healthcare project in the Caribbean, IFC is investing up to
US$22 million to build four private hospitals in tourist destinations of
the Dominican Republic, each with up to 60 beds, an small dialysis center,
three operating rooms, consultation offices, an emergency center, and an
intensive care unit. In later phases of construction, new beds and consultation
rooms will be added.
The first hospital is already under construction and will begin operating
next week in Punta Cana, in the Bavaro region of the Dominican Republic.
It will be equipped with modern facilities and run by the professional
management team of HOSPITEN, the project sponsor and a leading provider
of private healthcare in Spain. HOSPITEN has over 30 years of experience
in this sector and has developed a strong reputation as a provider of high
quality healthcare services particularly in tourist destinations of the
The hospitals will serve local residents as well as the influx of tourists
who visit the Dominican Republic each year, said Karl Voltaire, IFC Director
for Latin America and the Caribbean. The project will set high standards
for healthcare services, and provide the critical social infrastructure
needed to sustain the tourism industry, the single largest foreign exchange
earner for the country. He noted that the lack of quality healthcare services
has been identified as one of the major barriers to the development of
tourism in the Dominican Republic.
IFC's investment includes a loan of up to $11 million for IFC's account
and up to $11 million for the account of participants. These are the first
hospitals in the Dominican Republic to be backed by international financing.
The mission of IFC, part of the World Bank Group, is to promote private
sector investment in developing countries, which will reduce poverty and
improve people's lives. IFC finances private sector investments in the
developing world, mobilizes capital in the international financial markets,
and provides technical assistance and advice to governments and businesses.