Founded by Dr. Rustomji B. Billimoria in 1912 as a T.B. Sanatorium, Bel-Air stands on the sprawling 44 acres of land known as Dalkeith in Panchgani, Satara District, which was gifted by Sir Dorabji Tata. Handed over to Red Cross in 1964, this 240 bedded hospital consists of 58 heritage bungalows.
Since 1994 the Hospital enlarged its mission to address the challenges of an unfolding disaster relating to HIV/AIDS. This was at a time when hospitals refused to admit them, Government had no program and Anti-Retroviral Therapy (ART) was not available. Families abandoned patients and dead bodies were not even claimed due to the high level of stigma and discrimination.
Bel-Air pioneered treatment and care of HIV/AIDS patients in India and is one of the best treatment centers in the country and is a National Training Centre today. Bel-Air admitted and treated more than twenty thousand HIV/AIDS patients until today. Dr. A.P. J. Abdul Kalam, as the President of India, visited Bel-Air in 2003.
As TB is making a resurgence, Bel-Air is fully committed to continue its original mission of combating TB, now with the added dimension of treating MDR TB. As part of the RNTCP Bel-Air is running a TB Unit and Drug Resistant TB Center for Government of Maharashtra.
In 2014, Bel-Air Hospital was awarded the Times of India Healthcare Achievers Award 2014 for being the best in India in the category of “Innovation in managing long term condition”.
Another attraction in this campus is the Nursing College – the first of its kind in India, with the collaboration of the University of Illinois at Chicago. Our nurses are placed in reputed hospitals like Breach Candy in Mumbai.
Simultaneously, a 2 year Nursing Training Program of Midwives sponsored by Johnson & Johnson is being conducted for 60 poor rural girls of Maharashtra.
The US based National Public Radio has rated Bel-Air to be one of the model hospitals for the developing world.