Nazarbayev University’s relationship with UPMC began over a year ago with an in-depth feasibility study. UPMC examined how oncology care was delivered in Kazakhstan and identified gaps to becoming an OECD-style hospital. A 500-page report analyzed all aspects of care delivery and outlined opportunities for improvement, addressing everything from the physical sites and layouts of six hospitals to staffing, medical record keeping, technology and equipment, management systems, processes and metrics.
Ultimately, it was decided that Astana would serve as the NROC hub for what would become a sophisticated and far reach network of cancer centers.
According to Bill McDonald, UPMC international facilities and construction director, the target completion date for the oncology hospital and research center is December of 2016. To that end, NROC already has engaged the design-build firm of Strabag, based in Vienna, and London-centered Asif Khan [confirm]—the architect of the Olympic Village in Sochi. Nazarbayev University’s facility construction directorate is acting as engineer.
Plans have been drawn, perfected with several revisions, and submitted to the sanitary authorities for approval, according to McDonald. Further, a 5.4-hectare (13.3-acre) site was located and fenced, the ground prepped and an access road created. Work also has begun on equipment procurement.
“We’re part of a large master plan for Astana,” says McDonald. “There is an enormous amount of building occurring there, which is immediately apparent when you enter the city. There are cranes everywhere you look. It’s exciting to be a part of it.”
Says McDonald, “our NROC building project will feature 290 spacious and well-equipped patient rooms, eight state-of-the-art operating rooms, a medical and radiation oncology area, expansive radiology department, research laboratory, pharmacy, mammography, pain clinic, lab and microbiology units, a 300-car garage and nine-story guest house—and much more.” The design and location of each section of the facility was carefully considered, he added, and will align with UPMC’s best practice healthcare delivery model.