India: government action to promote medical tourism

The national government of India is proposing to improve support for inbound medical and wellness tourism post-Covid, by restructuring the National Medical & Wellness Tourism Promotion Board, and introducing a more liberalised visa policy.

India believes that, post Covid-19, demand for wellness travel will increase, which offers a great opportunity for the country with its varied offerings.

The government currently views the National Medical & Wellness Tourism Promotion Board as not fit for purpose and is proposing to change its leadership, to make it a body that helps drive Indian medical and health tourism.

The Board will be restructured to streamline its functioning and discharge its responsibilities as one-stop centre for medical value travel. It will have an advisory committee, a technical committee and an executive committee.

The government has released a draft strategy to boost travel, by promoting the country as a medical and wellness tourism destination. The Draft National Strategy and Roadmap for Medical and Wellness Tourism seeks to promote India as an accessible and affordable destination for medical treatment and wellness.

The key drivers for growth of medical tourism and wellness tourism are mainly affordability and accessibility of good healthcare services, facilitation around hospitality services, minimal waiting time, plus availability of latest medical technologies and accreditations.

The Ministry of Tourism has recognised the immense potential of medical tourism and has been actively working on promotion and development of medical tourism to India, the draft plan says.