Malaysia's healthcare travel industry recorded more than RM1.2bil in revenue in 2022. This successful recovery is due in part to the efforts made by key industry players and stakeholders, which includes the media.
“In 2022, during the recovery phase, industry players worked closely to implement proactive measures in providing continuity of care to patients while ensuring the safety of locals and international patients. These include media providing travellers with updated information on travel restrictions, standard operating procedures, and safety measures, allowing healthcare travellers to make informed decisions on their travel plans.
"As a result, the industry saw an encouraging number of healthcare traveller arrivals following the opening of borders in April 2022, signifying healthcare travellers’ trust in Malaysia as a safe and trusted healthcare travel destination, as well as a key indicator for positive industry recovery,” said Mohd Daud Mohd Arif, chief executive officer of Malaysia Healthcare Travel Council (MHTC) in a statement.
Mohd Daud also listed a few significant milestones in healthcare travel, like the successful implementation of a medical travel bubble before the reopening of borders, launch of the industry blueprint, re-establishment of a medical e-visa and digitalisation efforts.
Even more efforts are being put in to enhance the industry, like the implementation of a one-stop-portal for healthcare travel and a Health Facilitator Training Programme, to equip international tour and travel agents with the essential knowledge and skills in becoming Malaysia “healthcare agents” abroad. Plans for raising Malaysia’s first Flagship Medical Tourism Hospital and the establishment of more strategic partnerships as well as driving advocacy for the Malaysia Healthcare brand are also in the works.
To celebrate the media’s contributions in helping to promote Malaysia’s healthcare travel industry, MHTC will again organise a Medical Travel Media Awards for both local and international journalists.
“Recognising the media’s role in growing and shaping Malaysia’s reputation as a healthcare destination over the past year, we are pleased to announce the return of MTMA, celebrating media’s contributions through excellent journalism and storytelling in promoting Malaysia’s healthcare travel industry,” said Mohd Daud.
The MTMA is one of the first global media awards that lauds the work and contributions of journalists, freelancers, and influencers in sharing stories that promote medical travel in Malaysia. There are 12 categories overall, including the Best Print Medical Travel Report, Best Online Medical Travel Report, Best Medical Travel Journalist of the Year, and Best Medical Travel Editorial Team of the Year – each of the category includes subcategories of Malaysian and international media respectively.
Local and international media practitioners can submit their entries from now until Oct 14. Finalists and winners will be announced at the MTMA2023 awards presentation ceremony on Dec 14. For more information on the submission of entries and MTMA2023, visit www.mhtc.org.my/mtma.