Kiran Patel

Local philanthropist and entrepreneur Dr. Kiran Patel has invested $60 million dollars in a medical device company that plans to relocate its headquarters to Tampa.


Mister Dalton / Flickr

Health care executive Kiran Patel has bought the former Clearwater Christian College property with plans to develop an osteopathic medical school on the 25-acre campus overlooking Old Tampa Bay, the Tampa Bay Times reported.

Universal Health Care still has a willing buyer with a fat wallet, but its future now lies in the hands of the Department of Financial Services and possibly the court system.

The St. Petersburg-based company, founded and run by Dr. A.K. Desai, has Medicare plans in 19 states, including Florida. Universal also has a Medicaid contract with the state of Florida. Desai said the company currently has about 145,000 members.

Dr. Kiran Patel of Tampa, who already has two small but fast-growing Medicare HMOs, said he has offered to take over Universal Health Care, a financially-troubled company based in St. Petersburg.

While there are still many unknowns, he said, he understands Universal’s liabilities are somewhere between $50 million and $100 million. He said that if Universal doesn’t get a bailout, the state will place it in receivership.

"It's a very sick company," he said.