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Tourism and Health Ministries of Indonesia partner to develop Medical Tourism in the region

The Tourism National Coordination Meeting III run in Jakarta from Sept. 26 – 27 marked an important agreement between the Tourism Ministry and the Health Ministry for the development of International Medical Tourism towards Indonesia.

Tourism Ministry’s secretary Ukus Kuswara said that Medical Tourism has a big potential considering both the location and infrastructureof Indonesia and the number of Indonesians who travel abroad to get medical treatment. Around 350,000 Indonesians currently undergo medical treatment overseas but it is also important to develop and promote the existing medical infrastructure in Indonesian popular tourist destinations, such as Bali.

Health Ministry Secretary-General Untung Suseno Sutarjo said that the success of Bali in being the best spa destination in the world is not yet supported by scientific evidence. These traditional health treatments need to be preserved and supported scientifically in order to compete globally.

Cooperation between the Tourism Ministry and the Health Ministry is part of a wider partnership agreement signed by the two ministries during the Tourism National Coordination Meeting III. The partnership involves policy and program coordination in order to improve medical tourism, education for locals, information and data exchange.

In this moment it is fundamental for the institutions to be aware of the traditional values, authenticity, uniqueness of the country and for the ministries to develop a marketing strategy for medical products, services and private businesses in the tourism industry. Health Ministry will be responsible also for pushing private sector to build leading upscale hospitals and traditional health facilities.

The ministries will form a taskforce with hospital, spa and other health association representatives in order to grow awareness of international patients regarding the medical excellences of the country.
Bali is well known for its beautiful beaches but it also has plenty of International hospitals as the tourism minister Arief Yahya, said. Recommended hospital, such as BIMC Hospital in Nusa Dua, are already established to take care of those who fall sick during their vacations.

So the next challenge for Indonesian government is to make the country a tourism destination for health, as it deserves, and not only for its beautiful landscapes.

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