Home > COMMUNITY > Philanthropists Drs. Kiran and Pallavi Patel donate $200 million to Florida’s NSU

Philanthropists Drs. Kiran and Pallavi Patel donate $200 million to Florida’s NSU COMMUNITY

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Fort Lauderdale, Florida: Nova Southeastern University (NSU), on September 25, announces the largest philanthropic gift in its history from Tampa-area cardiologist Dr. Kiran C. Patel and his wife, pediatrician Dr. Pallavi Patel. The commitment will significantly expand its programs in osteopathic medicine and health care sciences, and be used to develop a new 27-acre campus for NSU in Clearwater, Florida. Kiran and Pallavi Patel are renowned in Florida for their philanthropy, community service and entrepreneurship.
The commitment from the Patel Family Foundation includes a $50 million gift and an additional $150 million real estate and facility investment in a future 325,000 square-foot medical education complex that will be part of NSU’s new Tampa Bay Regional Campus, in Clearwater. The campus will house a new site for NSU’s College of Osteopathic Medicine, as well as its existing programs in the Tampa area.
The gift was announced at a press event – attended by many Indian reporters who specially fly from India as well as various part of USA and the local mainstream media – at the Nova campus in Davie, Florida.
“This is indeed a landmark day and the historic day for NSU and Patel family,” said NSU President Dr. George Hanbury, announcing the gift at the press event. “This $200-million-pladge will make NSU the premiere leader in healthcare education on the both east and west coast of Florida,” said Dr. Hanbury.
“This gift and financial commitment from our innovative and visionary donor-couple will allow NSU to help fill the growing need for physicians and health care professionals, particularly in underserved, multicultural and international communities,” said NSU Chancellor of the Health Professions Division and Interim Chief Operating Officer, Fred Lippman.
Addressing the media persons and the faculty members and some students at the event, Dr. Kiran Patel said: “I firmly believe the best gift anyone can give anyone is education”.
“I feel that it is more important than ever to advance the current state of health care,” said Dr. Kiran C. Patel. “It is rare for someone to have the opportunity to impact the world in this way, and, as an immigrant to the United States, I am particularly honored to be able to make a difference in people’s lives around the world. I believe that NSU is the future of multi-disciplinary medical education. Together, we will be able to capitalize on an opportunity that will be beneficial to millions of human lives, many right here in Florida and many others across the globe,” he said.
“The partnership between NSU and Patel Family Foundation will benefit thousands of patients, students and doctors,” said Dr. Pallavi Patel.
The Patels’ gift consists of two parts: a $50 million cash donation that will go to the school directly, and $150 million in real estate and “facility investment.”
Nova received about half of the $50 million, with the other half pledged. It will be put toward the osteopathic medicine program and pay for the first two years before the program is self sufficient. Some of that will go toward scholarships in both osteopathic medicine and health sciences.
The $150 million will go toward building a 325,000-square-foot medical education complex in Clearwater (Tampa), Florida.
The Patels will retain ownership of the land and the facility, and Nova will be paying rent on an operational lease for a minimum of 20 years, according to George L. Hanbury, Nova’s president.
With the Patels’ gift, NSU has renamed two of its colleges as Dr. Kiran C. Patel College of Osteopathic Medicine and Dr. Pallavi Patel College of Healthcare Sciences.
Dr. Patel had wanted to start his own medical school for some time, but said he knew the biggest challenge beyond infrastructure and accreditation was putting together the curriculum and academics to run it. That’s where Nova came in.
Patel said he was drawn to the school because of its academic platform and track record with medical studies. He also admired the reputation of its students.
“Historically, Nova graduates are known to be providing services in underserved areas, so that path will continue,” he said.
Dr. Patel said he wants the school to focus on both international connections and servicing locals. With the new campus, Nova expects its graduating physicians to jump from 230 to about 380 per year. Those additional doctors, Patel said, mean more primary care for the people of Florida.
When the new campus is up and running, Dr. Patel expects it to add to what he said is Tampa Bay’s growing reputation as a “health hub.”
In recent months, Tampa Bay has drawn an increasing number of medical companies, facilities and institutions: California biotech company Amgen opened a facility in Tampa in March, and pharmaceutical giant Johnson & Johnson chose Tampa for its corporate service headquarters in 2015. Downtown, USF is constructing its new medical school.
What will set Nova’s new campus apart, Dr. Patel said, will be its international focus, both in terms of its student body and its aim to expose future doctors to medical challenges around the world.
“The world will benefit from our students going there,” he said. “Today’s medical student has very little exposure of lifestyle standards in third world countries, and our focus is going to be to ensure that students coming out of this college are going to have a vastly different experience.”
In addition to the donation, Dr. Patel said that he was committed to spend additional $200 million by 2019 to set up a 40 hectare campus near Vadodara in Gujarat with Nova willing to expand their operations to India.
The Patels’ goal is to be involved in the training and education of generations of physicians and other healthcare providers who will serve in areas with the greatest need across the country and worldwide.
American professors would be positioned in India and Indian professors brought here to sort of guide the trainers to academically produce students of the same caliber as those graduating in the US.
Going a step further the college will be accredited with American bodies to start residency in India, Dr. Kiran Patel said.
Indian students coming to the US will know how a world class institution works and Indian doctors will get an exposure to modern healthcare. He said: “Medical doctors from India will be brought to the United States for a year long residency in the US. “It will be like training the trainers,” he said.
“By that you’ll be solving the crisis of paucity of healthcare in India, He said, noting that students, residents and post-graduates will start providing services when the college opens.
As under US law, a medical college must wait for five years to expand, the medical college in India will open in 2024.
Dr. Kiran Patel said his gift to Nova was the first step to realize his dream of enhancing healthcare in India.
Patel family donations over the years:
• March 2017: Patel and his wife, Dr. Pallavi Patel, donate $5 million to Florida Hospital Carrollwood, to fund expansion of the emergency department and a modernized cardiac catheterization lab.
• October 2012: The Patels create a $12 million endowment to transform a University of South Florida graduate program into USF’s Patel College of Global Sustainability.
• May 2005: The Patels give $18.5 million to USF, combined with $16 million in state matching grants, to establish the Dr. Kiran C. Patel Center for Global Solutions. The Patel Center, which school officials tout as the first of its kind in the state, sets out to brainstorm solutions for international issues — health, economic development, safety and the environment.
• March 2005: The Patels give $3 million to Pepin Heart Hospital & Research Institute at University Community Hospital for a heart research institute.
• December 2004: After a tsunami sweeps through southeast Asia, Patel and the Patel Foundation for Global Understanding take in donations from people across the bay area and by August 2005 reported they had raised almost $2 million. Patel used the donations to begin rebuilding the village of Pattinacherry, India, which lost most of its 500 residents. The project includes new schools, hospitals, orphanages, a job training center and homes for widowed, poor and abandoned women.
• October 2002: The Patels donate $5 million for the Dr. Pallavi Patel Performing Arts Conservatory at the Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center.
• March 2000: The Patels donate $450,000 to the construction of a charter school on the University of South Florida campus.

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