Tourism after treatment

Tourism after treatment

He had another week in India, which he chose to spend savouring the delights of the Hampi temple architecture. The pictures Matt posted on a social networking site bear testimony to a visit well spent, adding meaning to “health-tourism.” 

Like Matt, there are many who blend health and travel for optimum benefits. They come to Bangalore with a dual strategy in mind: To get their medical treatment at one-third the cost and to explore the city and its surroundings as well.

Taking a cue from this emerging trend in health tourism, many hospitals, and the hospitality and tourism industry have realised the potential of this niche market. They have accordingly channelised their needs and facilities.

Take the case of Manipal Hospital, which has collaborated with hotels like Leela Palace, Royal Orchid and a few guest houses in its proximity to provide accommodation to the patients and their families. The same trend is being followed by other leading hospitals to boost greater inflow of foreign patients into the city.

Imran Sherali, a Tanzanian wanted to take a short trip to 'God's own country' Kerala, after his surgery. He wanted a reliable tour operator to give him the best price with a great package. "The agent suggested by the hospital was of immense help as he organised the Kerala tour according to my specifications. This was my best trip," adds Imran, who was in the city to mend his fractured leg.

Travel agents and hotels are coming up with lucrative packages and holiday schemes, catering to the growing list of foreign patients. Big health tourism players such as the Apollo Hospitals group have an informal arrangement with local travel agents to manage travel related queries and organise tours for the patients.

Some hospitals have formed their own in-house travel desks that takes care of all the travel related requirements of the patients. This ensures that the patients need not run from pillar to post to plan a vacation.

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