PR’s Comprehensive Cancer Center Project Breaks Ground

Go Lean Commentary

imgresThe forgoing article touches on a critical mission and motivation of the Caribbean Union Trade Federation (CU): to impact the battle against cancer. The roadmap for the implementation of the CU, Go Lean … Caribbean highlights that 1 in every 3 Americans are at risk of cancer, so surely the Caribbean rate of affliction cannot be far behind. Therefore the Caribbean region must prepare. Cancer treatments are expensive! Some treatments can cost $20,000 – $30,000 each month for 4 – 6 month stretches. Our population, like many other societies, continues to age, get sick and battle cancer, so we cannot be ill-prepared. Lives are at stake!

The CU mission is to prepare in advance for cancer: to install the mechanisms to garner as much cost-savings as possible while delivering the highest quality of care and health-related services for our people. And while we are making efforts to save lives of Caribbean citizens, Diaspora and visitors, we also want to exploit any economic opportunities.

By: The Caribbean Journal staff

A major new hospital project has broken ground in Puerto Rico, Governor Alejandro Garcia Padilla announced.

The new Comprehensive Cancer Center Hospital project is being built with an investment of $196 million. The 12-floor facility will include eight operating rooms and 72 beds.

Construction on the project, which is located in Rio Piedras, is projected to last around 30 months, with a completion date set for April 2016.

The government said the project could create more than 1,300 direct and indirect jobs during construction and 750 once the hospital is up and running.

“These types of centers are characterized by scientific excellence and the capacity to integrate a diversity of research approaches to investigating the problem,” Garcia Padilla said in a statement. “They have a key role in advancing the cause of reducing deaths from cancer.”

The Governor said the hospital is aiming to be a “primary source for discoveries about the nature of cancer and the development of new approaches to prevention, diagnosis and therapy.”

Construction of the hospital had initially been slated to begin in 2010.

“The ultimate recovery of Puerto Rico depends on economic development and the jobs we create,” the Governor said.


The Go Lean roadmap takes a strategic approach. There is the need for cancer and medical research, so the CU promotes and invites the establishment of medical research parks, laboratories and campuses as Self-Governing Entities (SGE). These bordered facilitates, similar to the PR project depicted above in the artist rendition, would only submit to CU jurisdiction and authorities – no FDA regulations! This freedom allows for more latitude and creativity in the pursuit of cancer cures and treatments.

Without a doubt, this strategy of SGE’s fulfills many CU objectives. In addition to the life-saving potential of local cancer research, the CU seeks to improve the environment for academic and occupational endeavors for STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Medical) professionals. The region would now offer an alternative to the debilitating brain drain. In fact, the opposite would occur: the region invites empowering immigrants to help facilitate this vision. The Go Lean … Caribbean roadmap describes that the Diaspora and their legacies (foreign-born children), would see a Welcome Mat to “come in from the cold” – welcome home – to a better place to live, work, learn, heal and play.

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