Medical tourism in india – development through PPP and opportunities in Organ Transplant.

JAIPUR: Medical practitioners of Indian origin in America advocate public private partnership (PPP) to promote health tourism in Rajasthan.

Talking on the sidelines of the ongoing Fourth Indo-US health summit in Jaipur organised by the American Association of Physicians of Indian origin (AAPI), president Dr Ajeet R Singhvi said public private partnership has done wonders in the tourism sector in the state and this model should be replicated by the health sector too in the state and the country at large.

He said “India has excellent medical practitioners matching and even exceeding the western standards but the infrastructure is not up to the mark. This is an area where the private sector could step in,” he said.

He said, “India presently accounts for a minuscule percentage in global investment in medical tourism. But, it has phenomenal potential, provided we upgrade our infrastructure and lay down proper procedure. We have the essential ingredients in the form of well-qualified medical practitioners and low cost of services.”

The infrastructure could be developed by the private players. Even people from neighbouring countries like Pakistan and Afghanistan fly to the West for treatment irrespective of the exorbitant expenses. India could be a hub for medical tourism, provided it takes appropriate steps, he said.

Co-chairman and president-elect of AAPI, Dr Sunita Kanumury said organ transplant is another area where the country has a potential to develop into a major centre. Though the Transplantation of Human Organs Act (THOA) was passed in 1994, the sector has miles to go to meet the rising demand for transplantation.

Getting a donor remains one of the main challenges in India. In Amercia about 99 % of the organ transplant is carried out from cadveric (brain dead) patients. However, in India this is yet to become popular, she said.

The issues of diseased donor identification, management, procurement, allocation, transport and transplantation are not firmly addressed or practised said Dr Ajai Khanna. Creation of dedicated transplant centres for supporting and treating patients with end stage organ diseases could be an option, he opined.

As reported in Times of India.