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Dr. Devi Prasad Shetty: King of Cardiac Surgery

Compiled/Written by Murali Kamma Email Compiled/Written by Murali Kamma
April 2012
Dr. Devi Prasad Shetty: King of Cardiac Surgery

Dr. Devi Prasad Shetty, founder of Bangalore-based Narayana Hrudayalaya Hospitals (NHH), participated in the India Summit at Emory University last month. But he did it virtually. That was understandable, not only because Shetty is a busy cardiac surgeon (his hospitals are responsible for 9000 cardiac operations every year), but also because telemedicine is an integral part of his organization. NHH connects remotely to 100 facilities in other parts of India and over 50 in Africa, points out Fast Company magazine, which recently picked it as one of the world’s 50 most innovative companies.

What makes NHH remarkable? Despite being a top-notch medical center, most of its patients are not well-to-do. Many, in fact, are poor and they take advantage of a micro-insurance health plan that Shetty started a decade ago in association with the Karnataka state government. Quality care at low prices also translates into more foreign medical tourists for NHH. Shetty’s honors include a Padma Bhushan in 2012 and an Economist Innovation award in 2011.

It all started with Mother Teresa, who reached out to Shetty in the ’90s for medical help. After that inspirational moment, there was no turning back—and Shetty, who sees on average 75 patients daily, has come a long way since he performed his first cardiac surgery on a baby in 1989. Currently, the NHH anchor hospital alone has 3000 beds.

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