BANGKOK, Nov 12 (The Nation Thailand/ANN): Thailand’s “Health for Wealth” plan for economic recovery is taking off under the twin engines of its herbal products and medical tourism markets – worth 50 billion baht and 1 trillion baht (RM128 billion) respectively.
Legalised cannabis sold over the counter around the country is the latest fuel powering those impressive figures.
The figures were revealed by the Public Health Ministry to the media as the country builds the medical hub seen as key to its recovery from the pandemic-related crisis.
The spokes of the hub are traditional Thai medicine, alternative medicine, herbs, Thai local wisdom, and medical tourism, ministry permanent secretary Opas Karnkawinpong said.
In 2022, Thailand has so far consumed 52.104 billion baht worth of herbal products, up from 48.108 billion baht in 2021, he added.
Opas said the Health for Wealth plan had three major benefits: creating more jobs, generating more income for people and the country, and conserving traditional Thai medicine and wisdom.
Meanwhile, the Department of Thai Traditional and Complementary Medicine has set the following four policies for 2022, according to its chief Dr Thongchai Lertwilairattanapong:
- Provide traditional Thai medicine and alternative medicine in every area of the primary healthcare system.
- Improve the quality, efficiency, and sustainability of herbal medicine manufacturing.
- Promote cannabis and hemp to boost the economic value of health products, medical cosmetics, and treatment in the public and private sectors.
- Build a Thai foundation to develop leaders in traditional medicine in 2027. - The Nation Thailand/ANN