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India stands out as medical hub in South Asia, 54% of total medical tourists are from Bangladesh

The embassy said that any student, who joins for clinical medicine programme in China after November 2021 and fails to obtain license to practice as a medical doctor in China, will be rendered ineligible to appear for Foreign Medical Graduate Examination

India’s importance as a medical hub in South Asia has been increasing over the last few years. According to a Times of India (ToI) report, 54 per cent of the overall medical tourists who visit India are from Bangladesh.

The number of Bangladeshi visitors coming into India for treatment has increased over the years.

While in 2015, a total of 120,388 Bangladeshis visited India for medical purposes, the number stood at 221,751 in 2017.

An Invest India report said that India is largely visited by medical visitors from Afghanistan, Pakistan, Oman, Bangladesh, Maldives, Nigeria, Kenya and Iraq. Delhi NCR, Mumbai, Bangalore, Chennai, Chandigarh, Jaipur among others comprise top destinations where foreign patients head for treatment.

Also read: After defeating second Covid wave, India set to rejoin battle in South Asia against the disease

According to a blog published by Invest India, with over 1.2 million allopathic doctors, 0.17 million dental surgeons, 2 million nurses, and 0.8 million formally trained Ayurvedic doctors, the country has the largest pool of doctors and paramedical staff in South Asia.

“Expected to contribute a staggering $512 bn to India’s GDP by 2029, the travel and tourism industry is an integral pillar of the Make in India program and is emerging as one of the key drivers of growth among the services sectors,” the Invest India report said.

Meanwhile, Devi Shetty, a member of the National Medical and Wellness Tourism Promotion Board told ToI that the Centre’s decision to extend e-medical visas to 166 countries has helped needy patients from abroad to reach out to Indian hospitals.

“India is a cheap healthcare destination and hospitals here are known for quality treatment,” the newspaper quoted Shetty as saying. The well-known surgeon also said that most patients who came to India sought complex heart surgeries and Cancer treatment.

However, medical tourism came to a near halt since last year due to the Covid 19 induced travel restrictions.