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|Tajuk||Certificate Presentation To New Healthcare Facilites Registered Under MHTC And Launch Of MHTC Web Portal|
BY THE MINISTER OF HEALTH
5 APRIL 2012
CERTIFICATE PRESENTATION TO NEW HEALTHCARE FACILITES REGISTERED UNDER MHTC AND LAUNCH OF MHTC WEB PORTAL
DATA ON HEALTHCARE TRAVELLERS AND REVENUE GENERATED FROM HEALTH TOURISM
For the year 2011, we have been able to generate a revenue of RM511 million from Health Tourism, significantly surpassing the set target of RM431 million by 34.9%. In terms of total patients, the numbers have increased by 48.5%, from 392,956 in 2010 to 583,296 in 2011. Encouragingly, there was a 50% increase in the number of patients from the United Kingdom, Bangladesh, United Arab Emirates, USA, China and Hong Kong and this can be attributed to the promotional events held by the MHTC in these countries.
This is a clear indication that Malaysia is gaining more recognition and popularity as the preferred healthcare travel destination in this region.
NEW MEMBER HOSPITALS
Initially, there were only 35 hospitals that were registered with the MHTC to promote medical tourism. This has increased to 49 last year and for this year, the addition of 14 more healthcare facilities has brought the total to 63, out of which 54 are hospitals and 9 are ambulatory care facilities. Thus, more and more healthcare facilities in Malaysia are becoming ready to cater to international patients.
INVESTMENT TAX ALLOWANCE (ITA)
Another good news is that the investment tax allowance, which was announced during the establishment of the MHTC, has been formally gazetted early this year by the Federal Treasury. It is hoped that with the benefits accorded through this tax rebate, more hospitals and facilities will have the incentive to upgrade, modernise and provide better quality care as we need to increase our capacity if we wish to attain greater growth in this vital industry.
EASE OF ENTRY
On the part of the Government, we will do our very best to ensure ease of entry for our overseas patients, especially in the area of visa extension for those who need to stay longer to continue with their treatment. The MHTC will assist in ensuring that your stay here is a pleasant and memorable one. The Immigration Department has been very supportive in expediting the visa extensions for our overseas patients.
MAJOR EVENTS AND ACTIVITIES IN 2012
This year, the MHTC plans to organize and participate in 47 promotions and marketing events locally as well as abroad, in order to attract a larger number of overseas patients to the country. To further enhance the marketing efforts, two new initiatives have been proposed, one of which is to develop an interactive web portal in different languages, whose launch we witnessed today. The other is the establishment of a dedicated call-centre to answer any enquiries related to healthcare travel in Malaysia. It is expected to be up and running by the 3rd quarter of 2012.
Besides this, the MHTC will also be organizing the first International Healthcare Travel Expo 2012 in November 2012. The objective of this Expo is to further enhance global awareness of Malaysia as the preferred Healthcare Travel destination.
MHTC’S REPRESENTATIVE OFFICES ABROAD
Indonesia and China are currently the two major markets for Malaysia and in view of this, the MHTC plans to set up two representative offices, one each in Shanghai and Jakarta. These offices will serve as a one-stop centre for all enquiries and become the local focal point for stakeholders to network.
INTERNATIONAL REPORTS ON MALAYSIA
We have received encouraging comments on our medical tourism services in a number of international reports. For example, surgeonabroad.com stated that:
“Malaysia is by far one of the premier travel destinations in the field of medical tourism today, and there are plenty of good reasons for this”. (http://www.surgeonabroad.com/)
A study conducted by Your surgeryabroad.com found that:
“the highest percentage of UK medical tourists have travelled to Malaysia (8.5%) for treatment rather than any other European destinations. This is followed by Spain and Brazil (both 7%), Singapore (6.8%) and Thailand (6.6%) (http://www.yoursurgeryabroad.com)
Last but not least, the target for this year’s revenue generated through healthcare travel has been set at RM548 million and I believe that its attainment will be a reality, with the concerted efforts of the MHTC and all our key partners.