Health service provider Apollo Group and Indira Gandhi National Open University recently signed a memorandum of understanding to launch 45 medicine-related courses in four verticals from January next year. The courses will benefit medical staff, nursing staff, paramedical staff, executives and support staff. They will be launched at the proposed Apollo Aragonda Health Knowledge City (AAHKC) in Chitoor district of Andhra Pradesh, Apollo Hospitals Group Chairman Dr Prathap Reddy told reporters here. He said the knowledge city spread over 100 acres has been designed to train 2,000 learners at a time. The facility will have simulation labs, classrooms, a hospital, a medical college and residential facilities. “Our commitment is to train 25,000 skilled health-care workers per year in this facility,” Reddy said. There will be a 50-bed modern health care unit with high-tech medical equipment in knowledge city, Reddy said further. According to the agreement, the training courses would be jointly developed by Apollo Hospitals and IGNOU. The course duration ranges from a minimum of three months to two years. The training sessions will be on-line, on-site and also by way of distance learning. Reddy said the group has begun construction of ‘Apollo Reach Hospitals’ in rural areas. It has also started procuring land and identifying cities to be set up in the first phase of 25 such hospitals over the next two years across the country.