The world took a novel turn with the deadly emergence of coronavirus. The life-threatening virus by now has strengthen its roots all across the globe. Coronavirus has compelled the world to slow down and has affected every possible sector of economy. The hunger of development had to diminish because lives were at risk.
The virus commencement had upset the economy and government all over the world. Even the medical tourism was not spared. But some intellectuals believe that medical tourist is not at a very steep loss as it would be able to recover from it post lockdown faster than any other economic industry would.
What is medical tourism?
When people across the globe travel to different countries for getting medical, surgical or dental help and while at the same they also plan for vacationing, traveling to visit the attractions of that place is referred to as medical tourism. People travel to different countries for medical help to enjoy better facilities, enhanced treatment and cheap prices. To understand better, when co-effective medical care collaborates with tourism industry to offer treatment is medical tourism. Globalization also gets promoted as the hospitals or nursing homes treating overseas patients are representative of international marketing.
Medical tourism- India
The age old concept of medical tourism has achieved popularity in the recent times. The history of India’s healthcare tourism will connect its roots from the ancient achievement of Yoga and Ayurveda. India treats numerous tourists from the neighboring countries like Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and China to distant nations like United Kingdom, America, Canada, etc.
Medical care provided by India include:
- Dental treatment
- Cardio vascular surgery
- Open transplants
- Eye treatment
- Knee and hip surgeries
- Cosmetic surgeries
India is a land known for its diversities, rich culture, historical attractions and geographical landmarks. Hence it already becomes a magnet of attention on international level. So, reasons why people choose India as their preferable medical destination are:
- International accreditation is available in hospitals
- Cheaper treatment fee compared to the other destinations offering the same treatment
- Good flight connectivity
- Availability of over 650 thousand doctors
- High skilled experts with good communication skills are offered
- Empowered Pharmacy sector which is achieving international recognition
- Fluent English speaking staff for easier and comfortable communication
- No waiting time, that is patients can get their treatment anytime they wish to unlike other medical destinations
- Most importantly, Unani, Siddha, Naturopathy, Yoga and Ayurveda have its origin on this land. And in case of any minor ailments these provide the best cure and can be put under an alternative choice available
A meeting was held by Foundation of Healthcare & Wellness Promotion to discuss how this havoc situation of coronavirus as forced India’s Medical Travel Industry to face a prolonged pause which might continue for the next few months. The meeting was attended by the thought leaders of the industry like eExpedise Healthcare, Magnus Medi, Shinon Global and HBG Medical Assistance.
The President of Foundation of Healthcare & Wellness Promotion, Mr. Dilip Chopra said with sorrow, “There are many medical tourism players who have brought India to the top of the world medical tourism map, unfortunately, today they stare at a dark future”. To which the CEO and Founder of eExpedise, Mr. Amit Sharma mentioned that how f the corona conditions remain the same for the next 6 months then Medical Value Travel industry will get hit by a fiscal Damage of 2.5 billion dollars. And this amount of revenue could have only been generated if their business was on the usual pace for a count of 8 months without the coronavirus disruption. HBG Medical Assistance’s Predident, Dr. Abhik Moitra said’ “the geographies from parents arrive,- Africa, Central Asia and most of West Asia- are still in early stages of coronavirus. There, the cycle may last even longer as they started late. Thus, to expect to business to start back in one month’s time is a distant dream.”
Considering such a drowning situation the major crowd has requested the government to take some necessary steps like
- Reduce restrictions on oversea patients (with adequate measures ensuring that they don’t spread coronavirus)
- With FICCI, COVID compact council must also be involved for an increased support for the Medical Value Tourism
- This industry gets recognized as independent industry
- Immediate financial support and stimulus needed by the Medical Value Tourism companies which purely drives the industry, or else the industry might lose its existence and consequences like immense predictable and unpredictable forex loss, choking of future multi-billionaire inflow opportunities and heavy unemployment might be faced.
The hope to stand back…
Every business in India along with the world has got a hard smash from Covid-19 and are expected to take a tortoise walk on the revival path. But the tourism ministry of the nation assures that India will remain the cheapest, safest and the most chosen as well as reliable medical tourism destination even after the pandemic.
It is believed by the Director of Indian Tourism Development Corporation, Mr. Piyush Tiwari that Indian Medical Tourism Industry will leave the developed countries of Europe and America behind to get back on the track of revival. He said that, “Medical Tourists will probably be much more aware of where the go and hoe medically safe the country seems to be to them and medical travel destinations like India that have a lower number of covid-19 cases and fewer deaths relating to the virus are likely to have a faster recovery.
If the coronavirus pandemic wasn’t there to disrupt the equilibrium then the medical tourism space was predicted to grow its value up to 9 billion dollars.
This sector has been equally hit as the other economic sectors, and this year is likely not to be much fruitful in the wake of covid-19. The revival will be really quick but it depends completely on the availability of medicines and vaccines for fighting coronavirus.
Hence with the hope of recovery and fast revival on the development track we all long for cope up with the situation with calm and strength.