MEDICOS TARGET 'UNTAPPED' MARKET IN SURFERS
Written on the 8 May 2015 by Nick Nichols
GOLD Coast Radiology founder Dr Michael Ryan, with business partner Dr Paul Chou, have broken the mould with their latest venture by establishing a new multimillion-dollar clinic in the heart of Surfers Paradise.
Gold Coast Radiology, which opened their first radiology practice at Hope Island in 2010, have taken prime space in the ground-floor retail mall of Circle on Cavill to tap into an underserviced population between Main Beach and Broadbeach.
"The overall business plan was based on two aspects servicing a large population and providing specialised services not currently available," says Ryan, who is expecting the new Gold Coast Radiology clinic to open in June.
"We did a rough demographic assessment on this area and we estimated there are 40,000 people living between Main Beach and Broadbeach, an area that currently has no specialist medical imaging services.
"In terms of an underserviced population, it is an attractive opportunity."
Ryan says it made more sense to look at Surfers Paradise rather than Southport for the new clinic, particularly since Southport Hospital has relocated to Parklands.
The bold plan to bring specialist medical imaging services to the city's tourism heart originated during the mayhem of light rail construction in 2013. Ryan concedes it was an opportunistic concept at a time when much of Surfers Paradise was at a standstill, hemmed in by roadblocks and construction fencing.
Details of the lease struck with Circle on Cavill's owner EG Funds Management have not been disclosed, but Chou says the deal was attractive.
"It was a positive outcome for the landlord and Gold Coast Radiology" says Chou.
"Free car parking has also been provided to patients, in conjunction with direct tram access via the G Link services.
"It's not a small amount of money invested, but we do so with business confidence in this location."
Earlier this week, a $2 million state-of-the-art MRI scanning machine was lifted by crane in Cavill Ave onto the site, an operation that required surgical precision by a team of engineers and construction specialists.
Chou, who will be heading the Surfers Paradise clinic, says the machine will offer specialised imaging services that are not available on the Gold Coast, including the ability to conduct biopsies under MRI guidance.
The clinic also plans to offer sedation services to ease the stress for children undergoing MRI and CT, which presently requires a trip to the new Children's Hospital at South Brisbane (LCCH).
"We will be offering unique medical imaging services which are not currently available in the public hospital system or in the private medical sector on the Gold Coast or northern NSW," says Chou.
"We will be providing one-stop imaging services for locals and visitors to the Gold Coast - services in which patients historically have had to travel distances to receive previously."
Gold Coast Radiology has grown staff from four to forty over the past five years at Hope Island. The Surfers Paradise clinic will employ ten staff when it opens in June.
Picture: Dr Paul Chou during delivery of the MRI machine at Gold Coast radiology's new Surfers Paradise Clinic
Author: Nick Nichols