Published on : Tuesday, December 12, 2017
Keith Pollard, expert of the medical tourism sector and managing editor of the International Medical Travel Journal believes that Greece has to work really hard to go through and develop its medical tourism market. He expressed this while addressing a seminar organized during the 4th International Tourism Exhibition in Athens. Medical tourism was a “golden opportunity” for Greece. However, it requires strong strategy, synergy, extroversion and innovation to establish its foothold as a medical tourism destination, as emphasized by Pollard.
Currently, Greece’s hard work to endorse itself as a medical tourism destination has reached only 3 percent of patients who were looking for better and less expensive treatments, at the time frame when Turkey got 13 percent, he pointed out. Many other factors were pinpointed by other speakers like ageing populations, decrease in healthcare funding and cuts in services that supported medical tourism, pointing out that at present over 350,000 Britons were on waiting lists for treatments for 18 months and more.
Besides, there was strong competition and penetrating this market required organized action, collaborations and state support.
Athens Medical Association President, George Patoulis addressed the seminar along with the president of Greece’s municipalities’ union, who showed efforts made in this direction so far and enlisted comparative advantages of Greece like good infrastructure, highly-trained personnel and affordable prices for care.