PUTRAJAYA: Malaysia's medical tourism industry continues to rake in more income for the country, with RM1bil expected to come from healthcare travellers this year.
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak (pic) said medical tourism would be made "a priority area" for Malaysia so it could be the best in the region.
"Malaysia's share of the medical tourism market has nearly doubled in the last four years.
“In 2014, it reached 770,000 patients, bringing in revenue of around RM700mil.
“This year, those figures are expected to rise further to 930,000 patients, and a revenue of RM1b.
"Compared with one of our neighbouring countries, we still have a long way to go.
“I intend to make this our priority area to enhance our competitiveness in the field of medical tourism," said Najib, during the launch of the Malaysian Medical Association (MMA)'s "Fifty-Five Years 1959-2014" book at the Prime Minister's office Tuesday.
He also expressed hope that the MMA will give its cooperation in giving the medical tourism industry a boost.
Present at the launch were Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam and MMA president Dr Ashok Zachariah Philip.