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Thursday, May 27, 2010

On a medical sojourn

Exclusive In chat with Society Magazine - Prof. Arindam Chaudhuri

With the renowned alternative medical therapies like ayurveda, yoga, meditation, et al, coupled with pocket friendly and easy accessibility of medical aide has made India one of the most sought after medical tourist destination in the world. And the Indian government is leaving no stone unturned to promote it as the ultimate healthcare tourist choice. The Tourism Ministry under Sultan Ahmed recently organised marketing road shows in the Middle East countries with a delegation comprising of tour operators, hospitals and medical professionals in UAE, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Qatar to promote medical tourism in the region. Moreover to further boost the medical tourists’ footfalls in India, a medical tourism exhibition is to be held at Metro Convention Centre in Toronto in the later half of November 2009. The Canadian public will have free access to this Indian government supported three-day event, India Medical Tourism Destination 2009, organised by hospitals and medical tourism agencies with an aim to attract more Canadian medical tourists to India. Given the aggressiveness with which Indian medical tourism is being promoted in foreign destinations, a moot question arises that what has triggered such enthusiasm? The main idea behind all such promotional activities is the increasingly high potential of healthcare tourism in India and the huge amount of revenue that can be generated through this stream. Testifying the same, the recent CII-Mckinsey study on healthcare reveals that medical tourism can generate about Rs.50-100 billion of additional revenue by 2012 thus accounting for about 3-5% of the total Indian healthcare market. Another survey conducted by Deloitte Center for Health Solutions in 2008 puts forward that about 40% of Americans would travel overseas to meet their medical needs if the costs were half in comparison and quality of care was equally good. And here, India certainly fits the bill! Thus, with preferences of the people seeking medical facilities across the globe increasingly inclining towards India for meeting their medical needs, it becomes all the more important for the authorities to highlight the related information and advantages.

Ratan Lal Bhagat

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Source : IIPM Editorial, 2010.

An Initiative of IIPM, Malay Chaudhuri and Arindam chaudhuri (Renowned Management Guru and Economist).

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