The Department of Tourism said it signed a partnership agreement with Dubai-based Agora Group, a pioneer and leader in providing business solutions and productivity in the health and wellness tourism, for a high-level gathering of tourism stakeholders and medical professionals in Germany.
Tourism Secretary Christina Frasco said the Philippines is honored to be a part of the 2023 International Health and Wellness Tourism Congress slated on June 8 to 9, 2023 in Dusseldorf, Germany.
“We are giving the Philippines a fighting chance at becoming a tourism powerhouse in Asia. And we recognize that medical tourism and wellness tourism hold one of the keys to this endeavor, because we have the people, we have the facilities, and we are adjusting government policies to ensure that the climate for medical tourism to thrive will ensue,” she said.
The IHWTC is a closed-door, by invitation only, exclusive event that connects, via pre-arranged and pre-scheduled one-on-one meetings, medical and wellbeing travel solution providers with pre-qualiﬁed corporate buyers from all over the world.
Frasco said the partnership is one of the strategic moves the Philippine government considers as it positions the country as an emerging medical and wellness tourism destination in Asia.
The Philippines’ intent to sponsor the global congress is anchored on the current strategic position and potential as a “serious regional contender.”
Frasco said the partnership with Agora is a welcome development for the industry as it conveys great confidence in the potential of the Philippines as a next emerging medical health and wellness destination in Asia.
The partnership will also open massive opportunities for the country’s health and wellness offerings and will strengthen the Philippines’ presence in the Middle East tourist market, she said.
She also underscored the excellent linguistic skills of the Philippines, being one of the biggest English-speaking countries which means communication would not be an issue with visiting medical tourists.
The Philippines has 23 health facilities internationally accredited and recognized by the International Society for Quality in Health Care. In terms of ease of access to care, there are 63 private hospitals in close proximity to four international airports with almost no waiting time for appointments and treatment.
Medical procedures and treatments in the Philippines are also competitively lower compared to prices in Western and other countries in Asia.
“We are also looking at our islands, including Boracay, as a potential destination for Filipino wellness as well as CALABARZON that have a host of wonderful offerings in terms of wellness,” Frasco said.