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Medical Value Travel

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May 12, 2023

Why in news?

India hosted ‘One Earth One Health - Advantage Health Care-India 2023’ summit at New Delhi to promote Medical value travel in India.

What is ‘One Earth One Health - Advantage Healthcare India 2023’ program?

  • The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare in association with the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry has co-branded the 6th edition of One Earth One Health - Advantage Healthcare India 2023 with India’s G20 Presidency.
  • The event will emphasize the importance of global collaborations and partnerships for building resilient global health architecture.
  • It is a two-day event is to showcase India as the new hub of Medical Value Travel and its emergence as a major hub for world-class healthcare, wellness services and medical tourism.
  • It also aims to highlight India’s significance in medical potential and create and explore opportunities for healthcare collaborations between the participating countries.

What is medical tourism?

  • Medical tourism also known as medical value travel (MVT) is the practice of travelling across international borders seeking medical services, mainly elective or complex surgeries.
  • Stakeholders in medical tourism include airlines, hospitals, wellness centers and hotels among others.
  • Currently, the most sought-after destination for medical value travel is Canada.

NITI Aayog estimates that the Indian economy could earn an additional USD 9 billion by 2026 from MVT and wellness tourism.

Why is India a preferred MVT destination?

  • Trained and experienced doctors - The doctors in India are more experienced compared to rest of the world.
  • Well trained nurses - According to Ministry of Tourism website, India has 1000 recognized nurses-training centers with 10,000 nurses graduating annually.
  • India’s traditional medical - Such as ayurveda, yoga & naturopathy and other traditional systems of medicine are considered best for the treatment of various ailments, promoting wellness tourism.
  • Low cost of treatment - The treatment in India is very low compared with the other countries.
  • The cancer treatments are 65-90% cheaper rates when compared to US, Europe, Australia or even Singapore.
  • 200 types of medical services - India offers over 200 types of medical services ranging from fertility treatments to skincare.
  • Others - Cost-effective healthcare services, quality diagnostic equipment and trained doctors, with many of them fluent in English.

India ranked tenth globally for medical tourism with a score of 69.80 on Medical Tourism Index 2020-2021 (MTI).

MVT 2023

What are the initiatives to promote MVT?

  • National Strategy and Roadmap for Medical and Wellness Tourism - Was rolled out by union government in January 2022 to provide health services to the world at large.
  • Heal in India campaign - Launched by union government to market the nation as a wellness and medical tourism destination.
  • 37 hospitals including 30 private hospitals across 17 cities have been identified to cater to MVT.
  • E-visas - India has launched e-visas for MVT travelers from 156 nations.
  • Online MVT portal - The union government plans to launch a one-stop online MVT portal.
  • The portal will include mapping of all medical facilitators including government and private hospitals, booking of services, payments and post-operative services.

What are the challenges to MVT sector?

  • Lacks government regulations and monitoring.
  • Lacks a separate body to head MVT and coordinate between various stakeholders.
  • No standard prices for treatments across India.
  • The lack of a price range leaves tourists susceptible to cheating.
  • No medical insurance portability for MVT travelers.
  • Lack of awareness about National Accreditation Board for Hospitals and Healthcare Providers, India’s national medical accreditation.

Quick facts

National Accreditation Board for Hospitals and Healthcare Providers (NABH)

  • NABH is a constituent board of Quality Council of India.
  • NABH set up to establish and operate accreditation program for healthcare organizations.
  • NABH is being supported by all stakeholders including industry, consumers, government, have full functional autonomy in its operation.
  • NABH is an Institutional Member of the International Society for Quality in Health Care (lSQua).


  1. The Hindu│ India Status Of MVT
  2. The Hindu│ Advantage Healthcare India 2023 Features
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