VPS Healthcare plans major expansions, many firsts in the healthcare sector in 2020


  • LIFEPharma becomes the first pharmaceutical company in the region to enter the US market exporting Acetazolamide, a medication to treat glaucoma and heart failures
  • Group’s flagship project, 400-bed Burjeel Medical City, designed to be a hub for tertiary and quaternary care will open to the public

Abu Dhabi: One of UAE’s largest healthcare groups, the Abu Dhabi-based VPS Healthcare plans major expansions and aims to achieve many firsts in the healthcare sector in 2020. In a major step towards transforming the region as a hub for pharmaceutical production and export, the group’s medicine manufacturing arm, LIFEPharma, will be exploring new avenues entering into the European and American markets.

In a first of its kind, LIFEPharma, the region’s sole US FDA-certified pharmaceutical unit will become the first to enter the US market exporting conventional medicines. Initially, the company will be exporting around 25,000 bottles of Acetazolamide collaborating with Eywa, a leading pharmaceutical production company in the US. The first batch of the medicines locally produced at LIFEPharma’s production plant in Jebel Ali will be exported in January. Subsequently, the unit will be manufacturing and exporting more products particularly in the cardiovascular and diuretic therapy areas.

Apart from this, LIFEPharma is in discussion to strike a deal with major leading European multinational company, XO Laboratory, based in France. Once sanctioned, the pharma manufacturer will be producing a significant number of XO’s products locally in the UAE and import unique medicines such as Alendronic acid solution, Mynocycline, Alginic acide sachets and Ketoprofen/Omeprazole from France to the UAE market.

In 2019, LifePharma had signed a major deal with Canadian giant Apotex, the largest producer of generic medicines in North America, to produce generic medicines to be exported to North American markets. The pharmaceutical manufacturer has started producing a billion tablets annually to be exported to North America.

VPS Healthcare Chairman and Managing Director Dr. Shamsheer Vayalil said that LifePharma has become a crucial player in the Middle East and has contributed immensely to transform the region in becoming a hub for pharmaceutical production. “The year 2019 has seen one of our products being exported to the North American markets. It was a great achievement for us. In 2020, we will be exporting six more products to North America. We are the first in the region to do this. This year, we expect to get into more markets and improve our global footing,” he said. 

Also, VPS Healthcare’s flagship project, Burjeel Medical City will open its door to the public in 2020. A 400-bed facility spread over in a sprawling area of 1.2 million square feet, it has been designed to be a hub for tertiary and quaternary care. The medical facility has specialized oncology treatment for adult and pediatric subspecialties, long-term and palliative care.

Burjeel Medical City is touted to become a world leader in cancer genomics research and its translation into actionable clinical tests and for biomarker-driven drug development. For this, the facility will be devoting significant resources toward developing clinical research programs and trials to develop customized approaches for the prevention, diagnosis, treatment and drug development for immunotherapy and molecularly targeted therapies.

“The year 2020 is of great expectations for the group. We will be witnessing groundbreaking changes in the coming years across the healthcare sector. Technological advancements and medical research are taking medicine to the next level. At VPS Healthcare, we are committed to adapt to these changes happening across the industry and provide affordable and accessible healthcare to maximum number of people. We have always strived to be the best in delivering quality care to our customers and have steadfastly adhered to the principles of compassion and commitment. We will continue to do the same while growing to attain more heights,” Dr. Shamsheer added. 

The healthcare group is also working on more strategic partnerships to expand its landscape of operations.