Medical Tourism

Rupee fall to boost medical tourism

US President Barack Obama may have taken all possible steps to ensure that American jobs are not lost to Indians, but his health care initiative is doing exactly opposite of what he intends to do. After the advent of the US Affordable Care Act, popularly known as Obamacare, US insurance companies plan to encourage medical tourism. While some companies have already done that to save money, others are planning to do that once the Act becomes fully operational in 2014. And India is poised to become a major beneficiary, thanks to a significant cost advantage it provides along with a fast depreciating rupee. 

“Positive signs are already visible now,” says Vishal Bali, group chief executive, Fortis Healthcare. Numbers clearly indicate a positive momentum in the country’s medical tourism sector. Fortis’ international business (meaning patients from other countries) has grown at 20-25 per cent per annum in the last two years and it expects a growth of 28 per cent this year. “The number of patients from America has grown in tandem,” a Fortis spokesperson adds. Industry experts say even 30 per cent growth does not seem unlikely, given the movement of the rupee. 

Full report here Business Standard 


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