Florida medical tourism bill fails to progress

 

Despite substantial pressure from the promoters of a bill to get Florida to spend millions promoting domestic medical tourism, it failed to gain approval in March. After nine months of progress through the Florida senate the spending was not approved for the 2016/2017 state budget.

Republican Senator Aaron Bean proposed State Bill SB 178 that would have given Visit Florida millions of extra dollars to promote domestic and international medical tourism- and a mandate to promote both.

There were various reasons for failure including concerns from rival senators that Bean was pushing his region of Jacksonville over other areas that could have benefited from medical tourism, and doubts over the research used to justify the spending. There was also horse-trading to get other bills Bean supported through at the expense of others.

IMTJ has already analysed the research and suggests that Florida, has been oversold the potential to the extent that many senators failed to believe it.

The bill would have compelled Enterprise Florida to market Florida as a health care destination in collaboration with the Department of Economic Opportunity.

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