Published on : Wednesday, August 13, 2014
IMTEC: Dubai is recognised for its world class healthcare infrastructure and is continually progressing towards becoming an industry leader in medical travel. The two-day International Medical Travel Exhibition & Conference (IMTEC 2014) event opened its doors today to patients and global industry leaders in the field of medical travel at the Dubai International Exhibition & Convention Centre, Dubai, UAE.
The event takes place for the first time in Dubai and continues on the 6 March 2014.
Speaking as part of the keynote panel session this morning, Engineer Sobhi A. Batterjee, President & Group CEO of the Saudi German Hospital Group in Dubai gave his perception on how to increase the flow of medical travel patients in the UAE, especially to Dubai.
“The healthcare industry has high entry barriers and a long gestation period. In order to build strong healthcare groundwork suitable to sustain and support a thriving health tourism market, it is necessary to attract corporate players and institutional investors into healthcare and an attractive investment climate for healthcare needs to be developed. Collaboration between government and private agencies, including media, in promoting Dubai as a healthcare destination brand is necessary. Within the ethical framework, media need to promote and highlight the achievements of healthcare providers in order to further encourage the process,” says Engineer Batterjee.
A three pronged approach like infrastructure, regulations and support systems should be implemented in order to promote health tourism. Healthcare is a labour intensive industry and highly skilled healthcare talent needs to be generated. Labour market regulation is necessary for the sustainability of the hospitals and to maintain consistent high medical standards.
Medical tourism also depends on a smooth immigration policy of the country. A network of direct and non-stop flight availability from the identified health tourism catchment areas and special packages for the patients and families travelling on medical visa will help in building the health tourism industry.
According to Engineer Batterjee, “Dubai can be world’s largest healthcare tourism destination and this will help the Saudi German Hospital Group reach new heights from a regional to global recognition. It is an opportunity for the Group to support the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to further confirm Dubai’s position as a health care hub and promote medical tourism.”
The 2nd International Medical Travel Exhibition & Conference (IMTEC) relocated from Monaco to Dubai, UAE, for the first time under the guidance of Informa Life Sciences Exhibitions, organisers of the Arab Health Exhibition & Congress. The IMTEC exhibition provides a unique opportunity for companies within the medical travel value chain to showcase their services and facilities to a focused audience of medical travel professionals. For the first time, IMTEC is open to the public so that potential medical tourists can visit the show to explore their international medical travel options.