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Opinion

The center plans to promote Ayurvedic and allopathic tourism in the country

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The tourism ministry plans to promote Ayurvedic and allopathic centers registered with the AYUSH ministry (Ayurveda, Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homeopathy) as medical tourism centers, officials familiar with the matter told the Hindustan Times.

“After Covid-19, a lot of people will be looking to plan wellness tours,” an official said on condition of anonymity. “India is the ideal place and we have a great opportunity here,” the official said.

According to Tourism and Culture Minister Prahlad Patel, the decision was made at a meeting of the National Board of Health and Medical Tourism on Monday. “India has always been a leader in Ayurveda and we can become a global center for that tourism,” Patel told the Hindustan Times. The board will meet every three months to review progress.

It has officials from the Ministry of AYUSH, Internal Affairs, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Indian Medical Association, and private actors such as Dr. Naresh Trehan, Dr. Sangeeta Reddy and Ramdev.

Read also | ‘Demand for Ayurvedic Products Increased Globally During Covid-19’: PM Modi

India, officials said, is poised to become an even bigger player, as the cost of treatment is lower than other countries, the waiting time is shorter, the presence of qualified doctors, personalized medical care and a process of easy medical visa.

“The ministry is also in talks to ensure that medical tourists can obtain a visa within one day of their application,” the aforementioned official said. “Those facing problems will be redirected to a new call center that is being established at the Ministry of Culture to expedite their visa.”

India currently has 34 hospitals accredited by the Joint Commission International, an international body that certifies healthcare organizations. However, the National Accreditation Board of Hospitals and Healthcare Providers of India has certified 578 hospitals.

“The goal is to exponentially increase the number of internationally certified hospitals,” said the official. The list of these hospitals will be included in the Incredible India campaign and will be available on their website. The centers to be promoted will be identified by the AYUSH ministry.

“There are three buckets of strength that India has when it comes to travel of medical value, one is the combined power of traditional medicine and modern medicine in India,” Trehan told the Hindustan Times. “Traditional medicine, Ayurveda, can play an important role in treating allergies and gastrointestinal problems. Allopathy has established itself in treatments such as bone enjoyment. Then there is herbal medicine, which is used to boost immunity and reduce stress. “

Trehan added that by using embassies abroad to spread the word about the program, India can become a hub for such treatments. “There have been scattered efforts by individual agencies and hospitals to promote such trips. What is lacking is a consolidated effort and that is what the board of directors is planning, “he said.

The global market for the medical tourism industry is estimated to be worth $ 19.7 billion, with the Asia-Pacific region accounting for 40% of the share. India’s share was reported to be around 18% of the market in 2019, with nearly 4.75 million medical tourists traveling to the country in 2017.

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