Philippines seen as ‘attractive’ medical tourism destination
MANILA, Philippines – With many untapped potentials in healthcare and industry, the Ministry of Tourism said it sees the Philippines as an “attractive destination for medical tourism.”
“With world-class hospitals and facilities, qualified doctors and nurses, and the Filipino brand of hospitality, the Philippines is poised to become an attractive destination for medical tourism,” Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo said. – Puyat.
Juergen Steinmetz, a delegate to the recent World Travel and Tourism Council Summit, shared the same sentiment that the Philippines has the potential to become a premier medical tourism destination.
He shared that he underwent medical treatment at Makati Medical Center for his left leg which was diagnosed as inflicted by flesh-eating bacteria.
“It’s a secret that needs to be exposed and is coming out and going viral. The Philippines will become the number one destination for medical tourism,” Steinmetz said in her recent article published by etturbonews.com.
“All the ingredients are there. Excellent doctors and world class facilities, nurses who maintain the standard for high quality care around the world, and a beautiful country, wonderful beaches, great food and cities exciting,” he added.
Steinmetz also cited cheaper medical costs in the Philippines compared to other countries.
The tourism chief said the agency plans to boost the country’s medical tourism with the COVID-19 pandemic underscoring the importance of medical travel and wellness tourism.
The DOT also said it was looking to raise awareness about medical tourism in the global market.
“Currently, we have implemented measures that will further develop the country as a medical tourism destination in a calibrated approach, including the development of an internal ecosystem and a network of facilities in the country to meet the concerns and issues with this tourism product,” Puyat said. mentioned.
In addition to this, the DOT has also developed “the gold standard approach to health and safety for meetings, motivational conferences and events (MICE)” and has also institutionalized health and safety. safety in tourist activities.
Puyat said the DOT has partnered with the Department of Health (DOH) and the Makati Medical Center to meet the medical needs of tourists.
Last February, the government launched the Resbakuna sa Botika program in Boracay, in partnership with one of the country’s leading pharmacies, Watsons. Through this partnership, fully vaccinated locals and tourists can be accommodated to get their COVID-19 boosters.
Puyat said coordination with national government agencies and local government units led to a 98% vaccination rate among tourism workers.
In 2020, DOT also partnered with Makati Medical Center Foundation, MVP Group of Campanias Tulong Kapatid, or its Social Accountability Consortium “to improve Boracay Island’s health and communications portfolio.”
They planned to implement a pandemic preparedness program “to help restore tourism confidence in Boracay from a health security perspective.”
Meanwhile, the DOT recently appointed a Director of Medical, Health, and Wellness Tourism, Dr. Paulo Benito Tugbang, a licensed physician and leading nurse and midwife.
Tugbang previously led the DOH’s Medical Travel and Wellness Tourism Program and served on the Interagency Task Force for the Emerging Infectious Diseases Management Secretariat as technical lead.