Medical tourism in Mauritius to get India help

Indian healthcare majors have been invited by the Mauritius government to invest in the island

New Delhi: Impressed by the growing healthcare infrastructure and quality of doctors in this country, Mauritius is seeking India's help to boost its medical tourism industry and has invited Indian healthcare majors to invest in the island nation. Two hospital chains have already responded.

"India is a growing power in the field of both tertiary healthcare and drug development. We are inviting major players in your country to invest in Mauritius. Pharmaceutical, hospital and clinical trials ... the opportunity for Indian players here are very good," head of Healthcare and Life Sciences Cluster in the Board of Investment, Mauritius, Nitin Pandea said.

"As you know, both Fortis and Apollo hospital chains have entered our country. They have generated hundreds of jobs. We are in talks with a few more hospital chains in India. At least two more including an eye care hospital chain is set to invest in our country," Pandea added.

He said the Indian Ocean island now gets fewer than 4,000 foreigners a year coming for medical treatment and wants India's help to increase its revenue from this sector. India gets around 500,000 foreign patients from across the world every year.

"Once big names from India enter, it will instill more faith among patients from abroad. We have started feeling the effect and hope to invite over 10,000 medical tourists to our nation.

"Currently, thousands of people from Africa are coming to India for complicated medical treatment as medical expenses in India are far lower than in Europe and the US. Setting up hospitals here will bring benefit to both Mauritius and the hospital chains," he added.

Pandea said many patients don't like to travel far for health problems and providing them the same facilities closer home will boost revenues of these hospitals.

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