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COVID- 19 proving fatal for medical tourism industry

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Medical value travel, includes patients travelling to India for treatment both in modern medicine, AYUSH sector, is estimated to be $3 bn market for India

Foundation of Healthcare & Wellness Promotion had a meeting to discuss amidst the travel breakdown in the world and with no foreseen resolution to COVID-19 fears, the Medical Travel Industry of India comes to a standstill, at least for next few months. Medical value travel, which includes patients travelling to India for treatment both in modern medicine and AYUSH sector, is estimated to be $3 bn market for India.  Thought leaders of the industry were part of the meeting like Shinon Global, eExpedise Healthcare, Magnus Medi and HBG Medical Assistance to name a few.

Dalip Chopra, President, Foundation of Healthcare and Promotion, India, said, “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”.

Amit Sharma, Founder and CEO, eExpedise Healthcare said, “The fiscal damage to the MVT industry due to the novel Corona is estimated at almost $2.5 billion, if the corona conditions persist across the world for six months. This is equivalent to the revenue we would have generated over eight months if our business had progressed at the usual pace, without the unusual disruption caused by COVID-19. Most of this amount would have gone towards salaries and maintenance of our international offices, that generate patient flow to India.”

In view of the above dismal scenario, we urge the Govt to take necessary steps to streamline the industry in the view of this pandemic.

  •  Recognise MVT companies as an independent industry.
  • The MVT industry, driven purely by MVT companies, needs immediate financial stimulus and support. In absence of this, the industry may not survive, resulting in immense foreseen and unforeseen forex losses, losses on account of widespread jobs and losses of multi-billion dollars inflow opportunities in the near future.
  • Involve COVID impact council along with FICCI to support the MVT industry, which brings in so much forex to the country.
  • Reduce restrictions on international patients coming to India as soon as possible, with adequate measures to ensure such patients don’t spread COVID-19.
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