Norton Rose, the international law firm, has advised the international healthcare provider, Netcare Healthcare UK Limited, on the first of the Government’s new Diagnostic Treatment Centre (DTC) deals to reach financial close.
The agreement involves Netcare providing and operating specialised, mobile opthalmic treatment units, which will travel the length and breadth of the UK to enhance the volume of service delivery to healthcare clients wherever required. As their name suggests, the Opthalmic DTCs will provide patients with the full spectrum of required services – diagnosis, treatment and aftercare – unhindered by the emergency pressures that general hospitals are often subject to.
Netcare Chief Executive Dr Richard Friedland said:
“Norton Rose demonstrated an impressive professionalism, diligence and breadth of expertise that greatly assisted us in this groundbreaking initiative.”
Partner Martin McCann, who led the Norton Rose team advising on the landmark project, said:
“As the first project of its kind, and given the short timetable, this has been challenging for all involved. This innovative project is somewhat of a hybrid between what is seen on short-term ‘waiting list initiatives’ and the form of documentation under a traditional PPP project.
Its key distinguishing factor, compared to PPP projects which have been signed to date, is that payment will be contingent on the provision of healthcare rather than the mere availability of premises. An additional complexity to this deal is that more than 40 different Primary Care Trusts are procuring services, resulting in significant interface issues with the private sector. It is clear that the final document will now be a template for the private sector on all future DTCs”.
“It was vital to us, as one of the leading firms advising the private sector on PPP healthcare projects, that we were involved in the first project, retaining our position at the ‘cutting edge’ of the sector. This has been a fantastic year for our health practice. We are already acting for the preferred bidder on four projects under the Government’s other new initiative, LIFT (Local Improvement Finance Trust), as well as the preferred bidders on more standard accommodation PPP projects. This year has also seen a growth in the number of mandates in the health sector in other countries, such as Italy, where we already have established projects teams.”
Norton Rose employment partner Peter Talibart acted on the employment issues involved with the project, which were both complex and sensitive.