Medical value travel (MVT), sometimes known as medical tourism, is the practice of traveling to another nation for medical treatment. Because most nations’ health-care systems are far from flawless, residents may find it essential, convenient, or more cost-effective to seek medical diagnosis and treatment in another country, with or without combining the trip with leisure or sightseeing.
In the ethos of One Earth, One Health, MVT is a win-win situation for both the patient and the host country’s healthcare system. The former receives much-needed treatment, while the latter receives a visitor who pays to use its services. MVT is currently a well-established healthcare paradigm in global health, as well as a thriving economic potential. The global market is expected to grow dramatically from 41 billion USD in 2020 to 192 billion USD in 2026.
India has a significant stake in the international MVT ecosystem, and our services provide interesting benefits. In our premier hospitals, notably in private business chains and government facilities of national importance, we provide modern medical and surgical services. More significantly, we provide therapies based on traditional medicine, namely Ayurveda, Yoga, and Unani. Furthermore, India provides a thriving landscape of wellness and rejuvenation.
We have the world’s most fascinating and diversified MVT setting if we combine all of the above with chances to explore our unique tourist and cultural landscape. In addition, we treat our visitors with the highest humility and kindness.
India’s high-quality healthcare comes at a significant cost savings. India has 2-3 times cheaper healthcare costs than other countries. For angioplasty and knee replacement, savings are 80% and 88% lower than in the US. This makes our system enticing to immigrants from South Asia and Africa, where such services are lacking. India is also enticing to people from affluent nations with huge waiting lines. Indians in North America and the UK are increasingly combining medical vacations with family visits.
We rank 10th in medical tourism and 12th in wellness tourism worldwide. The National Accreditation Board for Hospitals (NABH) has accredited almost 1600 hospitals, 45 Joint Commission International hospitals, and 184 Ayush hospitals. After the four metros, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Gurugram, Ahmedabad, Kochi, Chandigarh-Mohali, Pune, and Jaipur are frontline MVT cities, with more coming. The Indian MVT market is predicted to expand from 0.5 lakh crore in 2020 to 1.0 lakh crore in 2026. This is amazing, but the potential for India to become a top worldwide MVT powerhouse is enormous. Apart from providing good health, MVT offers enormous potential for employment creation.
MVT is a top priority for the Union administration. Stakeholder meetings have taken place. Advantage Healthcare India-2023 G-20 co-branded major events in Delhi (April) and Gandhinagar (August) brought together health industry, government, and international actors. This function is being promoted and supported by private hospital networks. Medical visas are becoming more popular. A new category of Ayush (AY) visa has been developed for foreign nationals seeking treatment through Ayush systems of medicine.
An “Advantage Healthcare India” webpage was established at the G20 health ministers’ conference in Gandhinagar last month. This game-changing resource provides prospective’medical tourists’ with a window of knowledge and engagement. It is intended to be a comprehensive, user-friendly, and bilingual interface that serves patients from all over the world. It provides a complete platform for information distribution, smooth patient experiences, transparent pricing, and complaint resolution.
For selecting the most appropriate services, patients may use the portal’s agile search capability to explore healthcare alternatives based on location, hospital, doctor, medical procedure, and MVT facilitator. End-to-end patient journey tracking offers a frictionless experience for all stakeholders, including patients, MVT facilitators, and hospitals. Notably, authenticity is exhibited by clear online package pricing applicable methods for both contemporary and traditional systems, allowing for informed decision-making.
The site assists with understanding treatment choices, making appointments, obtaining visas, and following up. There is also a teleconsultation module. Furthermore, the site effectively records patient testimonials.
Within a decade, we should aspire to make India the ideal destination for MVT – for both modern and traditional treatment, wellness, and rejuvenation. Along with the government, the healthcare industry and business should rise to the occasion. In this framework, both the private sector and high-level government organizations (including the AIIMS network) must assure three things. First, achieve and maintain world-class medical and surgical outcomes; second, create trust with customers based on transparency and value-driven care – from the first consult through post-discharge follow up; and third, go beyond healthcare and help with visitors’ hospitality requirements.
State governments should also make accommodations for international patients and their companions. MVT cells at state health and Ayush departments would be a wonderful idea. Local government should safeguard the safety and security of our visitors by showing zero tolerance for elements that may exploit them. Attendants may be persuaded to stay at home. We should be the best hosts as well as caregivers.
Quality treatment and human touch are inseparable in medical tourism, just as they are in the medical profession.