ISTANBUL - Memorial Health Group will open two new hospitals in Antalya and Istanbul in 2009, supported by a 10 million euro loan from German BHF Bank. The new facilities will offer employment to a total of 683 medical professionals.

The Memorial Health Group will open two new hospitals in Turkey in 2009 with support of a loan from German BHF Bank.

The new hospitals will be located in Antalya on the Mediterranean coast and Ataşehir on the Anatolian side of Istanbul, the Memorial Group announced yesterday.

"We will use a 10 million euro loan from BHF Bank to finance medical equipment and appliances for the two hospitals," Uğur Genç, general manager of Memorial Health Group, told reporters in Istanbul.

Memorial Health Group currently operates three medical centers and one major hospital in Istanbul. The group’s hospital in Okmeydanı, on the European side of Istanbul, opened in February 2000 and today has a capacity for 191 in-patients and includes 11 operating theatres.

Investment of YTL 66 million
The total investment in the two hospitals currently stands at approximately YTL 66 million, equally divided between the facilities. The 10 million euro loan from BHF Bank has been granted for the group for a period of seven years.

"We are confident in the Turkish health service. We see an increase in demand for more quality services in Turkey, which Memorial has been providing. The problems in financial markets are obvious, but we are still confident in Turkey," said Holger Caspar, vice president of the bank’s German operations.

Thomas Schröder of BHF Bank added, the global finance crisis was not likely to directly affect the bank.

"We are a bank owned by two German families, not involved in the U.S-based subprime mortgage crisis. Because of the nature of our bank, we are still in a very good position. The loans we are providing to Memorial Health Group have insurance cover from the German government. There are still good opportunities in the Turkish health industry, the development of which, in the long term, will be positive," Schröder said.

The first of the new locations to open will be Istanbul’s Ataşehir. The medical center of the complex has been open since May 2008, while the hospital is expected to open during the first half of 2009. The complex will have a capacity for 125 inpatients, 23 in intensive care. The complex also has five operation theaters.

The Ataşehir hospital will employ 325 medical staff, 65 of who will be doctors.

The Antalya hospital will also open during the first half of next year. The hospital will have a capacity for 115 in-patients, 17 of them in intensive care. The hospital, will have four operating theaters and employ 358 medical professionals, 68 of who will be doctors.