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Role of CII to promote Health Tourism in Kerala

India is a preferred health care destination and is set to grow globally, fulled by relatively low priced medical facilities available. It is estimated that overall business of medical tourism is growing 30 per cent per year and is forecast to generate at least US$2.2 billion a year by 2012. According to The Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), India is targeting to attract 1 million foreign medical tourists annually.

The Confederation of Indian Industry along with the Indian Health care Federation is working out to bring several medical institutions under one roof. In many respect India is a perfect medical tourism destination with competitively-priced, quality health care services in major tourist cities and connected by extensive global travel networks. CII is working in collaboration with the majority of tour operators to promote attractive health care packages for the promotion of medical tourism in the country. Upto now CII has successfully incorporated 40 hospitals under the shelter of medical tourism. The promotion work was started by the top 12 major hospitals in Keral including Lakeshore, Amrita, Medical Trust, MIMS, Baby Memorial, KIMS,Ananthapuri, Uthradom Thirunal, EMS Coop. Hospital etc.

In order to create awareness and market medical services, CII conducts exhibitions, cultural evening and international conferences on health tourism from time to time. With respect to that some of the major hospitals in Kerala are creating incentives to retain their best medical talent and tour agents and hospitality providers are forming partnership and offering value added packages. Best initiatives are undertaken to increase public awareness of medical tourism options available in the country. With that greater confidence is built up for the India hospitals to boost up the business of medical tourism. and satisfaction with tourism elements are the accelerator for further growth.

According to the CII medical tourism market in India is advantageous cost wise, which is only one fifth of medical costs in the West. CII recently completed a study on the Scope of

Medical Tourism in India. The study says that the medical tourists in modern medicine at present is hardly12,000 to 16,000. (This is exclusive of Ayurveda which is already about 3.5 lakhs.) By 2012 it will hit 1 million visitors to India. Out of this Kerala's target is 20%, i.e.2 lakhs. It is expected that in 5 to 10 years, Medical tourism will overtake other forms of tourism.

In addition to that the study of CII pointed at India's unique position in holistic medicinal facilities. The scope of alternative medicinal options is also high in the country. With Yoga, Ayurveda, Naturatherapy etc India offers unique medical services to the individuals that is simply incomparable.