Forging Resilience for Malaysia’s Healthcare Travel Industry


Forging Resilience for Malaysia’s Healthcare Travel Industry

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the course for various industries globally, and healthcare travel was no exception. As an industry that relies heavily on international travellers, the pandemic saw many key players in the value chain impacted, including travel and tour agencies, hoteliers, health facilitators, tour guides, logistics providers among others, owing to extended lockdowns and border restrictions.

More concerning is the inability to provide continuity of care to those who travel frequently from other countries for timely treatments, such as cardiac and cancer patients. As the pandemic lingers, existing patients continue to be at risk of not receiving a standard of care.

Economic Growth Driver

For Malaysia, the healthcare travel industry has been earmarked as a key economic growth driver, in particular for post COVID-19 economic recovery. At the forefront of this is the Malaysia Healthcare Travel Council (MHTC), a government agency under the Ministry of Health Malaysia (MOH), entrusted to facilitate and grow the nation’s burgeoning healthcare travel industry through the brand ‘Malaysia Healthcare’.

Leading Global Healthcare Destination

Once known as the Hidden Jewel of Asia, today, Malaysia is referred as the The World’s Healthcare Marvel, having successfully built a strong reputation as a safe and trusted leading global destination for healthcare travel. Having served 1.2 million inbound patients in 2019, Malaysia was deemed the Destination of the Year for healthcare travel by International Medical Travel Journal, from 2015 - 2018 and again most recently in 2020. Malaysia has certainly demonstrated a firm dedication towards offering world-class quality healthcare, competitive affordability, and ease of accessibility, delivered through a seamless end-to-end patient journey experience.

Commitment to Upholding Patient Safety

Malaysia’s position as a favourable healthcare destination is accentuated through seamless end-to-end services dedicated to upholding safety for patient’s peace of mind. Malaysia Healthcare’s seamless end-to-end service is an excellent model of successful public-private partnerships, consisting of an ecosystem to prioritise patient experience. Malaysia Healthcare works closely with healthcare facilitators, agents and representatives in our focus markets including China, Indonesia, and Vietnam, to ensure our patients’ needs are well cared for from pre-departure, to point of arrival, and right up to the patient’s return home.

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, travel restrictions disrupted existing healthcare treatments for many international patients. In response to this, Malaysia Healthcare introduced one of the first medical travel bubbles in the region to provide continuity of care for international patients under stringent SOPs. This initiative encompassed an all-of-government and all-of-private healthcare commitment involving various public-private parties, namely the National Security Council, the Ministry of Health Malaysia, the Immigration Department of Malaysia, and private hospitals. Through this initiative, we provided continuity of care for patients undergoing critical treatments, while ensuring the safety of patients and our nation.

Leveraging Our Core Strengths for Industry Sustainability

Recovery of the healthcare travel industry will depend on various factors such as domestic and global vaccine rollouts, ease on interstate and international border restrictions, as well as a return of confidence for tourists to start travelling again.

Our current priority is to forge better resilience for the industry – through the recovery and rebuilding efforts, which we trust will steer our path towards providing the best healthcare travel experience by 2025. We aim to achieve this is by building on our existing offerings and enhancing the Malaysia Healthcare experience through niche branding initiatives.

Through these initiatives, we trust Malaysia will be propelled into the global landscape as the leading global destination for healthcare, further cementing our position as the World’s Healthcare Marvel.

For more information on Malaysia Healthcare, visit website or Facebook

Watch the Marvel Video HERE

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