KUCHING, Dec 1: The Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture (MTAC) has established a Medical Coordination Committee to collaborate with hospitals, relevant authorities and the Malaysian Healthcare Travel Council (MHTC) to ensure the success of the health tourism industry in Sarawak.
Currently there are three private hospitals registered with the MHTC, namely Borneo Medical Centre, Normah Medical Specialist Centre and Timberland Medical Centre (yet to be renewed).
“These hospitals have at least one accreditation body and represent the best of Malaysia’s healthcare as well as for Sarawak,” the Sarawak government revealed in a written reply to a question raised by entrepreneur Charles Liew Tchen -Tchii during the “Sunday with CM: Dialogue Session with Young Entrepreneurs in Sarawak” programme held on Sept 28 this year.
The statement was part of the government’s response to questions delivered but not answered during the dialogue session due to time constraint. DayakDaily as the dialogue organiser had forwarded the questions to the relevant authorities to be addressed.
The state government also revealed that MHTC had introduced the eVisa to facilitate entry of medical visitors seeking medical treatment in Malaysia’s private hospitals.
“At the same time, it benefits Sarawak’s economy in term of visitor arrivals and receipts,” the statement read.
The statement added that the Sarawak government emphasised the drive to bring in more healthcare travelers especially from Brunei and Indonesia.
“Health tourism gives lucrative opportunities to the local private hospitals and medical professionals while also benefiting the tourism industry,” it added.
The statement highlighted that health tourism was the first tourism sector to be reopened during the Covid-19 pandemic to healthcare travelers and all private hospitals must strictly adhere to the standard operating procedures (SOPs) formulated by MTAC and approved by the Sarawak Disaster Management Committee (SDMC).
“All private hospitals must follow the SOPs, facilitate and monitor the travelers’ applications, approvals and also their arrivals.
“MHTC also helped in online marketing and promotional activities, online leadership with medical experts and also to organise series of training and updates in PENJANA (Pelan Jana Semula Ekonomi Negara) initiatives by the federal government while MTAC through the Sarawak Tourism Board is also promoting health tourism through the Visit Sarawak Campaign since its launch in 2018,” it added. — DayakDaily