Goa now eyes for health & wellness tourism

HOSPITALITY BIZ, MUMBAI | 21 August 2013 21:33 IST

Goa needs more high-end hotel rooms to hope for big-ticket tourists, according to the Goa Investment Policy 2013, prepared by a government-appointed task force, headed by Atul Pai Kane, Goa Chairman, Confederation of Indian industry (CII).

It also says that the state can position itself as a Health and Wellness Tourism destination, as per a report by Indiatimes.

Setting its sight on the emerging segment of the tourism segment, which attracted over 1.3 million people to India in 2013 alone, the draft Policy suggests that Goa has "good basic healthcare infrastructure" to cater to the segment. But more needs to be done, the draft Policy says.

The Policy also says that "attracting high-end visitors will mean creation of infrastructure and facilities, which in turn will provide gainful employment for Goa's youth.

The current disparity in the proportion of low-end to high-end hotels will be made up by encouraging more boutique and luxury hotels in the state".

The increased focus on high-end tourists also comes with the inevitable requirement of creating high-value tourism products, which should include oceanariums, theme parks, shopping malls, entertainment centres, high-end water sports and adventure sports, the Policy notes.

The Policy that has just been put in public domain for suggestions has outlined the importance of Medical Tourism in taking forward Goa's story.

"The government targets granting permissions to starred hotels, across categories, to a cumulative additional capacity of around 8,000 beds in the next five years," says the Policy.

"While Medical Tourism is growing in Goa, the government is keen to attract investments in new facilities and draw more medical tourists to Goa for high-end and complicated procedures.

For Medical Tourism to take off in a big way, uniformity and quality of services offered are critical," the Policy says, recommending several steps that the Goa government could take to beef itself up in the Medical Tourism sector.

The recommendations include setting up of large healthcare facilities to meet the needs of increasing medical tourists, mandatory registration with the Directorate of Health Services and the Goa Medical Council for facilities offering Medical Tourism and a rate card and details of facilities to be offered.

Also mooted is a government portal with details of each healthcare facility and which will serve as a liaison between patients and doctors and medical facilities.

Original Report

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- JOSE ROD, GOA | 22 nd August 2013 16:11


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