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World health tourism conference slated to bring US$10 million



KARON: An international convention on medical and health tourism to be be held in Phuket next year is expected to generate US$10 million, according to the event’s organizer, SOS Medical Tourism Services.

The World Medical Health Tourism Conference (TWMHTC) 2009 will be held at the Hilton Phuket Arcadia Resort & Spa from September 16 to 18 2009.

“Phuket is the ideal location to hold the conference because of it’s tourism and medical infrastructure and capacity to host international guests,” said Tom Callaghan of SOS Medical Tourism Services.

“TWMHTC 2009 is a great opportunity where key medical tourism industry drivers representing top healthcare companies and medical-travel associations will all be under one roof to network and do business,” said Ms Edubas, managing director of SOS Medical Tourism Services.

“The event is one of the initiatives in making Phuket the major destination for health and wellness in Thailand. The event will help open more doors for local investors into the international market, as well as for the global healthcare community to explore the possibilities of outsourcing medical treatments to Thailand,” she added.

The medical travel industry helps “patients without borders” seek more efficient, cost-effective and world-class healthcare facilities and services outside their home country, she explained.

Mr Callaghan said that the presence of well-equipped hospitals, the heartwarming hospitality of Thais and the world-renown Thai spa and wellness centers around the country help create a unique and rejuvenating experience for medical travelers to Thailand.

Although the formal conference runs for only for three days, many post and pre-conference activities have been planned, expecting to bring a windfall to Phuket of about US$10 million over the two weeks.

“As the draft agenda has already been set, we are now at the stage of looking at and developing our external itinerary,” said Mr Callaghan.

The conference will act as a follow-up to the American worldwide conference in San Francisco this year.

“By securing Phuket International Hospital, Thai Airways as the major airline carrier and the Hilton Phuket Arcadia Resort & Spa as the venue, all are looking good for a hugely successful event at this early stage,” said Mr Callaghan.

“All of Thailand may benefit from this conference as many conference delegates have indicated that they would like to travel and explore more places in Thailand apart from Phuket and Bangkok,” he added.

The conference is expected to be a huge “financial injection in the arm” for the local tourism industry as the event is scheduled to take place during the low season, said Mr Callaghan.


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