Medical tourism and community development – a celebration of world tourism day

September 27, is observed as the world tourism day since 1980 when the United Nations World Tourism organization first celebrated the occasion.  This has been a milestone in global tourism. The purpose of celebrating this day is to increase the role of tourism in the international community and demonstrate its effect globally. Observing this day with enthusiasm can have its positives in increasing business for medical tourism and community development on an international platform.

Travelling to another country for treatment_1

Travelling to another country for treatment has now become a better-understood phenomenon and has gathered popularity that is only increasing with time. In conjunction with the world tourism day, many national and international level seminars are conducted with an objective to create awareness among the public on the importance of community role for a stronger sustainable development of the industry.

“Tourism and Community Development” will be the theme of this year’s World Tourism Day (WTD) on 27 September 2014, according to the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO). The theme underscores the potential for tourism to increase opportunities for communities around the world. The official celebrations will be hosted by Mexico in the city of Guadalajara. This year’s theme is very aptly chosen for it provides a strong framework for the promotion and development of the strong community development and increase the possibilities of medical tourism altogether.

This year’s WTD theme is ideally timed to contribute to the debate on tourism’s contribution to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for each time we  travel we create a long value chain that provides jobs, livelihood, empowers local communities and brings in new avenues for a better future. The impact and effect of such actions on medical tourism and community development will be overwhelming.

trickledown effect of the benefits so generated in the tourism sector to the community level

The main agenda therefore is to create a trickledown effect of the benefits so generated in the tourism sector to the community level.  The official celebrations in Mexico will be home to a think tank which will bring together Ministers, development experts and key tourism representatives to address the relevance of a community based tourism approach as conducive to sustainable development.

The medical tourism industry has been increasing worldwide. Medical tourism has increased in part because of rising health-care costs in developed countries, cross-border medical training and widespread air travel. This World tourism day’s theme will help generate a community level approach that will profoundly help medical tourism industry grow further.

This will help in the development of Sustainable medical tourism. This will bring transformation in the medical tourism chain of service, making the stakeholders aware of being sustainable not only economically but also environmentally. The effect of this WTD will be such that sustainability is sure to be practiced on three grounds in the medical tourism industry.

Environmental sustainability

Environmental sustainability: Adopting medical practices that least harm the resources and the environment.

Social sustainability: Respecting the host community,’s authenticity on socio-cultural grounds, ensuring the preservation of cultural assets and traditional community values and promoting community development.

Economic Sustainability:  Promoting and ensuring long-term economic activities in which socio-economic benefits are equally distributed among all agents, generating stable employment opportunities and contributing to poverty reduction.

Medical tourism has evolves as real phenomenon that involves professionals, practitioners and patients. This 27 September the focus will on community development that will help medical tourism industry manifolds. Medical Tourism thus becomes a catalyst of social cohesion, going beyond the immediate impact of job creation and its positive economic consequences and enhances, for instance, local governance capabilities, which multiply the tourism impact even further. Thus, WTD 2014 will lead the world on the path of increasing locals and communities providing rejuvenation for the industry.

Summary

The theme for this WTD is Tourism and Community Development that will help generate a better understanding of the socio- culture at the community level. This will help medical tourism industry being effectively sustainable on various grounds and will add positives for the tourism industry as a whole.

Dr Prem Jagyasi (c)

Dr Prem is an award winning strategic leader, renowned author, publisher and highly acclaimed global speaker. Aside from publishing a bevy of life improvement guides, Dr Prem runs a network of 50 niche websites that attracts millions of readers across the globe. Thus far, Dr Prem has traveled to more than 40 countries, addressed numerous international conferences and offered his expert training and consultancy services to more than 150 international organizations. He also owns and leads a web services and technology business, supervised and managed by his eminent team. Dr Prem further takes great delight in travel photography.

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