>KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia was proclaimed Medical Travel Destination of the Year at the International Medical Travel Journal (IMTJ) Medical Travel Awards 2015, further cementing the country’s position as a world-class healthcare tourism destination that provides top-notch and innovative medical services.
Thirteen awards were given out at the ceremony on Wednesday at the Royal Garden Hotel in London, among them for International Hospital of the Year; Specialist International Patient Centre; International Dental Clinic of the Year; Medical Spa of the Year; Best Marketing Initiative; and Excellence in Customer Service.
For the Medical Travel Destination of the Year, the judges found in Malaysia what they were looking for – all-round excellence in promoting inbound medical tourism; verified statistics of yearly growth in medical tourists served; evidence of high levels of patient satisfaction; and co-ordinated activities that delivered an increase in medical tourism.
Malaysia’s private hospitals also won awards for Excellence in Customer Service (Gleneagles Hospital, Kuala Lumpur), Best Quality Initiative of the Year (Imperial Dental Specialist Centre), Best Travel Website of the Year (Ramsay Sime Darby Healthcare), International Cosmetic Surgery Clinic of the Year (Beverly Wilshire Medical Centre) and International Dental Clinic of the Year (Imperial Dental Specialist Centre).
Two local hospitals came in as Highly Commended hospitals: Imperial Dental Specialist Centre for its travel website and Prince Court Medical Centre in Kuala Lumpur for its customer service.
This is not the first time that Malaysia has proven its quality in the healthcare tourism industry. In the inaugural IMTJ Medical Travel Awards last year, the country’s private hospitals won three out of nine awards – for International Hospital of the Year (Gleneagles Kuala Lumpur), International Dental Clinic of the Year (Imperial Dental Specialist Centre) and International Infertility Clinic of the Year (Prince Court Medical Centre, Kuala Lumpur).
“Malaysia has the ecosystem and infrastructure for end-to-end healthcare services,” says Sherene Azli, chief executive officer of the Malaysia Healthcare Travel Council, a body set up in 2009 under the Health Ministry to develop and promote the country’s healthcare travel industry.
The annual IMTJ Medical Travel Awards recognise innovation, excellence and best practices in the medical travel and medical tourism sector.
This year, the awards were held in conjunction with the IMTJ Medical Summit (April 15-16) held at the same venue.