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Oct 11, 2012

Medical Tourism workshop prepares for the inevitable

Massimo Manzi

The Ministries of Health and Tourism in partnership with BELTRAIDE are one step closer to getting medical tourism in the Belize off the ground. A series of consultations and workshops ended today, with the launching of the medical tourism sector strategy and policy, developed by international consultant, Massimo Manzi. It was a three month job, which involved studying the competitive environment in Belize. According to Manzi, the Jewel’s advantages include that it is a renowned retirement destination, it offers a natural tourism package, it already has experience in dental tourism and it is an English speaking country, which eliminates the language barrier that other Latin American competitors are facing. Manzi has developed a three prong strategy for a “healthy” medical tourism sector in Belize.

 

Massimo Manzi, International Consultant on Medical Tourism

“We have been recommending to establish specific regulations of requirements of quality standards that providers, being hospitals, clinics or hotels, have to comply with in order to be officially promoted by the government. The whole strategy is a Belizean way to develop medical tourism, as C.E.O. Singh was mentioning, Belizeans should be the main actors of this industry. We are developing a strategy composed of three main elements; a complete and integral program in order to provide better capacity for local clinics, existing clinics and hospitals, in order to achieve international accreditation and in order to achieve the compliance of international standards.  A strategy of medical tourism is to start with quality and end with quality; quality not only on the side of infrastructure of clinics and hospitals, but also on the side of human resources. This is the second element of the strategy. We have to improve and we have to support our medical community in having continuing medical education.  There is a third element that makes possible all the strategy; that’s capital. It is impossible to develop a project like this without money. To raise money, that can come from local investors but the reality is that we are going to need support from foreign investors. There has to be and we found a way, a mixed model where can have foreign/local participation.  It will be a stages process; at the beginning Belize will be able to offer certain kinds of procedures in clinics that are ready or almost ready to achieve international accreditation possibly mainly dentistry, ophthalmology, dermatology and in the other stages having—including more complex procedures.”

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1 Response for “Medical Tourism workshop prepares for the inevitable”

  1. Ricky Malthus says:

    I take issue with Manzi in that what he is saying about the elements per se that make Belize attractive for medical tourism are true, he evades the fact that all things are not equal vis-a-vis other countries. Please return to your prototype, Manzi, and see the errant logic of your pronouncements. It can work but not just by the factors you have in that equation.

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