Medical Tourism

Topics: Health care, Tourism, Medical tourism Pages: 8 (3234 words) Published: September 2, 2010
Medical tourism
Indian Medical Travel: A Priority Sector

The Indian economy’s steady growth rate is also being reflected in the Indian healthcare and medical travel industry. Healthcare and medical health travel are priority areas for India, and the government has increased its budgetary outlay for medical travel and foreign investment.  Customs duties on the import of medical equipment have been slashed, and special incentives are being offered for future private healthcare facilities.  Government Plans for Attracting Medical Tourism to India

To promote growth in the Indian medical travel industry, the Indian government has plans to improve health infrastructure.  The government is currently in the process of increasing the number of hospitals, clinics, and clinical laboratories in urban as well as rural parts of thecountry. Incentives and tax holidays are being offered to hospitals and dispensaries providing health travel facilities.  The Indian medical travel and health care sector offers plenty of opportunities for businessmen, medical equipment manufacturers, healthcare service providers, and tourist agencies, and the government is encouraging them to invest in therapeutic and preventive health services so as to increase medical travel to India. The government has published analytical reports on the available opportunities in the Indian health care industry so corporate houses can make informed decisions regarding the Indian medical tourism sector.  Initiatives of Private Hospitals in Health Travel Projects outside India Recently, a memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed between the famous Apollo Hospitals and the American International Medical University (AIMU) for developing medical tourism projects worth $200 Million in the Bahamas and St Lucia.  According to the MoU, the Apollo group will develop a super specialty teaching hospital, research, and treatment facilityfor the AIMU group.  In addition, Apollo will develop, manage, and monitor the healthcare facilities at the existing AIMU group’s medical education facilities at the Bahamas and St Lucia campuses.  The AIMU group offers MD and PhD programs and offers $1.5 million in scholarships to Indian students every year. It is estimated that the AIMU group of institutions will attract 500 Indian doctors to the US in the current year Medical Tourism is the concept of traveling to a particular destination to avail the opportunity of the worldclass Healthcare services offered by the best experienced Healthcare professionals at the technologically most advanced medical facilities in complete privacy and for affordable costs. The Healthcare procedure is usually combined with a family vacation. The concept of Medical Tourism is not a new one. The first recorded instance of medical tourism dates back thousands of years to when Greek pilgrims traveled from all over the Mediterranean to the small territory in the Saronic Gulf called Epidauria. This territory was the sanctuary of the healing god Asklepios. Epidauria became the original travel destination for medical tourism. In the recent past patients from underdeveloped countries used to travel to the advanced industrialized developed countries to take the benefit of advanced medical health care in the hospitals, recently the trend is reversing. As far back as 3,000 BC, people with eye problems made pilgrimage to Tell Brak, Syria, where healing deities were said to perform miracles. Ancient Roman spas that were believed to cure an endless list of ailments still offer hope and relief to bathers today. The World Tourism Organization includes the following in its definition of medical tourism: medical care, sickness and well-being, rehabilitation and recuperation. India is the land of myriad experiences and exotic locales. It is a world of resplendent colours and rich cultural locales, be it...
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