Malaysia Wants To Be Serious Player In $4 Billion Medical Tourism Market


KUALA LUMPUR (ASRN.ORG) - The government of Malaysia has quietly given Malaysia's private hospitals the green light to get at least one hospital accredited by the internationally-recognized Joint Commission International (JCI) by the end of next year, according to confidential government documents.  Malaysia wants to be a serious player in the medical tourism market no later than 2009.

Malaysia's ambition is to compete with Singapore, Thailand, the Philippines and India in a medical tourism market that is expected to grow to $4 billion dollars by 2012.

According to the report, Singapore wants to attract one million foreign patients by 2012 and Bangkok aims to attract two million foreign patients by 2010.

However, much to the government's dismay, it will need to be accredited by the JCI prior to it becoming recognized internationally.   To date, it has no hospitals that have been accredited.

Currently, the JCI website shows that India has six JCI-accredited hospitals.

The Philippines and Thailand each have two JCI-accredited hospitals and Singapore has 10 such hospitals (including major government and private hospitals).

There are also a number of JCI-accredited hospitals in the Persian Gulf states.

JCI is an independent organization that evaluates a hospital’s standard, quality, staff, equipment and patient care.

A hospital with such an international accreditation would have a significant competitive edge in attracting medical tourists from both developed and developing countries as there is an assurance of certain standards being maintained.

The report concludes by stating that, "It would also be a welcome reassurance to Malaysians to know that Malaysian hospitals are internationally accredited."

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