Devi Shetty

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Devi Prasad Shetty
Born (1953-05-08) 8 May 1953 (age 63)[1]
Mangalore, Dakshina Kannada, Mysore State, India (now Karnataka, India)
Education Guy's Hospital London – Cardiothoracic Unit, (1983–1989)
West Midlands Cardio-Thoracic Rotation Program (Trained in Cardiac Surgery)
Kasturba Medical College, Mangalore, (1982)
St. Aloysius Mangalore
Years active 1983–present
Known for Pulmonary Thromboembolectomy Neonatal open heart surgery
Cardiomyoplasty Surgery
Left Ventricular Assist Device Support
Medical career
Profession Chairman and founder, Narayan Health. cardiac surgeon
Institutions Kasturba Medical College, Mangalore
Guy's Hospital United Kingdom
B.M. Birla Hospital Kolkata
Manipal Hospital Bangalore
Specialism Cardiovascular Thoracic Surgery
Notable prizes Padma Bhushan award for Medicine in 2012
Schwab Foundation's award in 2005
Dr. B C Roy award in 2003
Sir M. Visvesvaraya Memorial Award in 2003
Ernst & Young – Entrepreneur of the Year in 2003
Rajyotsava award in 2002
Karnataka Ratna award in 2001

Devi Prasad Shetty (Kannada "ಡಾ.ದೇವಿ ಪ್ರಸಾದ್ ಶೆಟ್ಟಿ") (born 8 May 1953) is an Indian cardiac surgeon. He is chairman and Founder of Narayana Health (Narayana Hrudayalaya is now Narayana Health), a chain of 21 medical centers in India.[2]

Early life[edit]

Shetty was born at Kinnigoli village Dakshina Kannada district, Karnataka, India. The eighth of nine children, he decided to become a heart surgeon when he was in tenth grade at school after hearing about Dr. Christiaan Barnard, a South African surgeon who had just performed the world's first heart transplant.[3] After completing his graduate degree in Medicine and post-graduate work in General Surgery from Kasturba Medical College, Mangalore, he trained in cardiac surgery at Guy's Hospital in the United Kingdom. He returned to India in 1989 and initially worked at B.M. Birla Hospital in Kolkata. He performed the first neonatal heart surgery in the country on a 9-day-old baby named "Ronnie" 1992 a successful operation in medical history. In Kolkata he operated on Mother Teresa after she had a heart attack and subsequently served as her personal physician.[1] After some time, he moved to Bangalore and started the Manipal Heart Foundation at Manipal Hospitals, Bangalore. Financial contribution for the construction of the hospital was provided by Shetty's father-in-law. He was elected as the chief patron of Indian Association of Clinical Cardiologists during the annual scientific session IACCCON 2013 at Bangalore.[4]

He has performed over 15,000 heart operations.[5] He was awarded the Padma Shri, the fourth highest civilian award, in 2004, followed by the Padma Bhushan, the third highest civilian award, in 2012, by the Government of India for his contribution to the field of affordable healthcare.[6][7]


In 2001, Shetty founded Narayana Hrudayalaya (NH), a multi-specialty hospital in Bommasandra on the outskirts of Bangalore. He believes that the cost of healthcare can be reduced by 50 percent in the next 5–10 years if hospitals adopt the idea of economies of scale.[8] Apart from cardiac surgery, NH also has cardiology, neurosurgery, paediatric surgery, haematology and transplant services, and nephrology among various others. The heart hospital is the largest in the world with 1000 beds performing over 30 major heart surgeries a day. The land on which the health city was built, was previously a marshland which was reclaimed for this purpose. The Health City intends to cater to about 15,000 outpatients every day. In August 2012, Shetty announced an agreement with TriMedx, a subsidiary of Ascension Health, to create a joint venture aimed at taking healthcare throughout India. In the past Narayana Hrudayalaya has collaborated with Ascension Health to set up a health care city in Cayman Islands, planned to eventually have 2,000 beds.[9]

Shetty also founded Rabindranath Tagore International Institute of Cardiac Sciences (RTIICS) in Kolkata. Shetty has also signed a MOU with the Karnataka Government during the Global Investor's meet to build a 10 billion 5,000 bed super speciality hospital near the Bangalore International Airport. His company has sighed MOU with Government of Gujarat, for setting up 5000 bed hospital at Ahmedabad.[10]

His company has built low cost 150 bed hospital at Mysore on land provided by Government and used cross ventilation instead of air conditioning, to cut investment cost.[11] He was a part of the seven-member panel of Board of Governors which replaced the MCI and served for a period of one year before it was further reconstituted.

His hospitals have reduced costs by taking advantage of the economies of scale, this allows them to complete heart surgeries for a hundredth of the cost in the United States. The Wall Street Journal has given him the title of Henry Ford of heart surgery.[12] In 2013 six new hospitals will be opened on the Narayana Hrudayalaya model, across the country which will provide high quality treatment at low cost. In the next seven years, there are plans to expand to 30,000 beds with hospitals in India, Africa and other countries in Asia.[8] In 2013, Bloomberg News reported that Shetty has trimmed costs with such measures as buying cheaper scrubs and eschewing air-conditioning. That has cut the price of coronary bypass surgery to 95,000 rupees ($1,583), half of what it was 20 years ago. Bloomberg said that he aims to get the price down to $800 within a decade. The same procedure costs $106,385 at Ohio’s Cleveland Clinic.[2] He has also eliminated many pre ops testing and innovated in patient care such as "drafting and training patients’ family members to administer after-surgical care".[13] Surgeons in his hospitals perform 30 to 35 surgeries a day compared to one or two in a US hospital. His hospitals also provide substantial free care especially for poor girl children.[14] In many parts of rural northern India, the poor refer to Dr. Shetty as Bypasswale Baba, i.e. the Saint who Grants Bypasses. Also very much like the saints of yore, no one who wants a bypass and comes to his hospital/ashram leaves without a bypass.

Shetty and his family have a 75 percent stake in Narayana Hrudayalaya which he plans to preserve so that he does not have to compromise on the freedom or decision making power in his mission to help the underprivileged and to bring down the cost of healthcare in the country. [11] Dr. Shetty has also gone heavily into e-Health. For example, by pioneering low cost diagnostic services. [15]


Yeshasvini is the world's cheapest comprehensive health insurance scheme, at Rs. 10 (20 cents) per month, designed by Shetty and the Government of Karnataka for the poor farmers of the state. It is very well-used in Karnataka with 4 million people covered.[5]

Awards and recognition[edit]

  • Padma Bhushan award for Medicine in 2012[16]
  • Karnataka Ratna award in 2001
  • Entrepreneur of the Year at ET awards in 2012[8]
  • Won the 2011 The Economist Innovation Awards for the Business process field.[17]
  • Honorary Degree, University of Minnesota in 2011
  • Honorary Degree, Indian Institute of Technology Madras in 2014
  • Schwab Foundation's award in 2005
  • Padma Shri award for Medicine in 2004
  • Dr. B C Roy award in 2003
  • Sir M. Visvesvaraya Memorial Award in 2003
  • Ernst & Young – Entrepreneur of the Year in 2003
  • Rajyotsava award in 2002
  • Indian of the year in public sector choose by CNN-IBN for the year 2012


  1. ^ a b "Dr. Devi Prasad Shetty". MSN India. Retrieved 5 June 2012. 
  2. ^ a b Gokhale, Ketaki (28 July 2013). "Heart Surgery in India for $1,583 Costs $106,385 in U.S.". Retrieved 6 May 2016. 
  3. ^ "The Henry ford of heart surgery". The Wall Street Journal. 25 November 2009. Retrieved 6 November 2012. 
  4. ^ "Publications". Retrieved 13 February 2016. 
  5. ^ a b "First break all the rules". The Economist. 15 April 2010. Retrieved 5 June 2012. 
  6. ^ "Padma Awards". pib. 27 January 2013. Retrieved 27 January 2013. 
  7. ^ "Padma Awards" (PDF). Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India. 2015. Retrieved July 21, 2015. 
  8. ^ a b c "ET Awards 2012". Economic Times. 19 September 2012. Retrieved 6 November 2012. 
  9. ^ "Devi Shetty to leverage frugal engineering for medical fraternity". Business Standard. 28 August 2012. Retrieved 6 November 2012. 
  10. ^ "Narayana Hrudayalaya, Gujarat join hands for health city project". 17 January 2009. Retrieved 26 May 2013. 
  11. ^ a b "We will prove the poor can access healthcare: Dr Devi Prasad Shetty, Narayana Hrudayalaya". Economic Times. 25 June 2012. Retrieved 6 November 2012. 
  12. ^ "The Henry Ford of Heart Surgery". Wall Street Journal. 25 November 2009. Retrieved 5 June 2012. 
  13. ^ Rai, Saritha. "Devi Shetty, Who Put Heart Surgeries Within Reach Of India's Poor, Is Taking Narayana Chain Public". Forbes. Retrieved 2016-05-07. 
  14. ^ "India's Philanthropist-Surgeon Delivers Cardiac Care Henry Ford-Style". Retrieved 2016-05-07. 
  15. ^
  16. ^ Dr. Devi Prasad Shetty, Padma Bhushan. "Padma Bhushan to Dr. Shetty". 
  17. ^ "Business Process award winner 2011". The Economist. Retrieved 5 June 2012.