With IMTCA (Indian Medical Tourism Conference and Alliance) 2012 kick starting its 1st edition in Hyderabad, the two day conference (2nd, 3rd) had unlocked the huge potentials that can be explored in the medical tourism sector in India. With advanced hospitals and well developed healthcare infrastructure, Hyderabad is set to become the medical tourism hub of India, revealed speakers at the conference.
With a potential of $35 billion global markets, the medical tourism sector holds a great growth potential if explored in the right direction. At present South Korea is leading in the medical tourism sector with a rapid growth of $6.9 millions in 2009 to 27.8 millions in 2011. In view of this India too can be explored to earn great revenues through promoting medical tourism in the country. With a well developed hospital infrastructure and well trained nurses and doctors Hyderabad stands in the forefront to grab the opportunity of become the India’s leading medical tourism hub.
Initiated as an objective to bring all stake holders (medical practitioners, doctors, hospitals, tourism and hospitality industry) at one place, the IMTCA event also gave an apt platform for networking with delegates and exchange ideas on research, academic and economic values.
Taking part in the 2 day event many participants shared their knowledge about best medical and health practices, challenges and opportunities that are needed to be explored in the medical tourism sector in the country.
Dr Pushpa Mitra Bhargava, Founder of Centre for Cellular Molecular Biology, who was the chief guest at the event stressed that though India has reached to a level where it has tremendous potential to become most preferred medical tourism destination in the world, the country’s healthcare sector still needs to focus its energies towards the rural population and device policies that enable safe and affordable medical and healthcare services to the poor. He said, “During the past 15 years, 270,000 farmers have committed suicides the country because they could not repay money borrowed meet their healthcare costs. In view this there is a need for a policy decision to chalk out middle way where it should not only cater to the healthcare needs of rural poor and at the same time promote corporate medical tourism.”
Talking about the importance of medical tourism industry, Varsha Lafargue, Founder and Chairperson, IMTCA and i-Transition Worldwide said “medical tourism has become a major source of national incomes in many countries. While countries like Israel, Jordan, etc. have limited natural resources, the revenue contribution through medical tourism towards their GDP’s is substantial and growing. Jordan enjoys 5 per cent of their GDP from Medical tourism and Israel’s is growing double digit figures. India enjoys both an abundance of manpower and natural resources and organized medical tourism will be able to generate revenues in billions of dollars in coming years.
About 200 medical practitioners, tourism professionals and specialists from across the country took part in the 1st edition of the IMTAC 2012. The two day event largely focused on global medical tourism and potential of Hyderabad as a medical tourism hub in India.
Dr. Ayapati Dharma Rakshak, director, Nizam’s Institute of Medical Sciences, Hyderabad, who was guest of honour at the event said, “With large scale healthcare programmes like Rajiv Arogyasir, Andhra Pradesh is in the forefront in providing the best healthcare services to the poor in the country. We have world class hospitals, well trained nurses and technicians. The medical costs in India are very low when compared to other developed countries. Taking up the initiative to make India one of the most preferred medical tourism destinations of the world is a great step forward and we look forward to having more such events that can drive the growth of not only the industry but also the economy of the country at large.” PHARMABIZ