COVID- 19 proves fatal for the Medical Tourism Industry

The Foundation of Healthcare & Wellness Promotion recently convened to address the challenges faced by the Medical Travel Industry of India amidst the ongoing travel restrictions and uncertainties surrounding COVID-19. With no foreseeable resolution to the pandemic, the industry has come to a standstill, impacting medical value travel, estimated to be a USD 3 billion…

The Foundation of Healthcare & Wellness Promotion recently convened to address the challenges faced by the Medical Travel Industry of India amidst the ongoing travel restrictions and uncertainties surrounding COVID-19. With no foreseeable resolution to the pandemic, the industry has come to a standstill, impacting medical value travel, estimated to be a USD 3 billion market for India. Thought leaders of the industry, including Shinon Global, eExpedise Healthcare, Magnus Medi, and HBG Medical Assistance, participated in the meeting to discuss the implications of the crisis.

Mr. Dalip Chopra, President of the Foundation of Healthcare and Promotion, India, expressed concern over the current situation, stating, “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.”

Mr. Amit Sharma, Founder and CEO of eExpedise Healthcare, highlighted the significant financial impact on the Medical Value Travel (MVT) industry due to the COVID-19 pandemic, stating, “The fiscal damage to the MVT industry due to the novel Corona is estimated at almost 2.5 billion dollars if the corona conditions persist across the world for 6 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.

  1. Recognise MVT companies as an independent industry.
  2. The MVT Industry, driven purely by MVT companies, needs immediate financial stimulus and support. In absence of this, the industry not survive, resulting in immense foreseen and unforeseen forex losses, losses on account of widespread jobs and losses of multi-billion USD inflow opportunities in the near future.
  3. Involve COVID impact council along with FICCI to support the MVT industry, which brings in so much forex to the country.
  4. 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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