Doctors as ambassadors for Greece

 

Greek medical tourism organisation Elitour aims to establish Greece as a leading medical, health and wellness destination.

The World Institute of Greek Doctors, in cooperation with the International Health Tourism Centre, both launched by Elitour, focus on the exchange of know-how to develop an international network of leading Greek doctors around the globe and to launch partnerships between doctors in Greece and those working abroad. The plan is for the Greek doctors to act as ambassadors for Greece.

George Patoulis of Elitour; "Our priority is the well-being of medical travellers. Our vision is for Greece to open the window of medical knowledge to the world, as a health destination, and a modern travel health country. Greece should focus on specialising in two or three forms of medical tourism – such as artificial insemination, dental and wellness – and provide the best services possible."

The World Institute of Greek Doctors was originally launched in Canada in early 2017 and recently re-launched. Greece has had many initiatives on medical tourism, which often fail to take off, and so far there appears to be no rush for Greek doctors overseas to get involved.

In its latest development plan, the tourism ministry aims to promote Greece as a 365-day destination by setting up special tourist development zones focusing on medical tourism, conference tourism, golf tourism and senior tourism.

This includes incentives to attract investors for new hotel complexes, the development of medical and thermal tourism, and the creation of tourist villages for EU nationals, allowing them to transfer their tax residence to Greece. A particular target is Russian investors.

George Patoulis has called on the government to implement a specific and well-researched national strategy in place, which will work towards Greece’s competitive positioning, with a specific focus on products and markets; introduce modern practices in quality assurance, licensing, patient registration and procedures; and focus on reducing costs.

The main source of inbound patients to Greece is Europe and Australia. They travel because facilities in Greece are comparable with those destinations with more established reputations in this field and prices are appealing.  View the in-depth IMTJ country analysis on medical tourism in Greece.

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