Dubai aims to draw tourists seeking medical treatment, therapies

The International Medical Travel Exhibition and Conference (IMTEC) took place in Dubai in August, bringing together medical officials, experts and specialists from 85 countries and 74 local and foreign companies.

IMTEC, which explored the various reasons people travel globally for health services, was officially opened by Humaid Al Qatami, director-general of the Dubai Health Authority.

“The prestigious status that Dubai enjoys internationally has paved the way for a better future for health,” Al Qatami told the Gulf News. “It has made the emirate of Dubai eligible for being the primary destination as well as a favorite for therapeutic tourism, drawing attention to the status Dubai enjoys among other centers worldwide of which the Authority is well aware and is keen to achieve within its terms of reference and its responsibilities and objectives in promoting the health sector.”

“The conference aims to discuss and evaluate the latest developments in the field of medical tourism and apply highest standards and quality to improve patient conditions,"  Dr. Layla Al Marzouqi, director of health regulation at the Dubai Health Authority, said.   

Al Marzouqi also said that since Dubai’s health system is flexible, efficient and capable of adapting to new circumstances, Dubai is attractive to medical tourists.

More than a quarter million people have made Dubai their destination of choice for medical tourism. Of those, 33 percent were Asian, 27 percent were European, and another 23 percent were from neighboring Arab countries and the GCC.

To support medical tourism, Emin Cakmak founded the Healthcare Tourism Development Council. Cakmak said Dubai looks forward to bringing in more therapeutic tourists from the GCC region, while consolidating relations with Turkey and the GCC.

“We offer a number of high-quality and high-standard health services, and our objective is to meet the needs for health services that are required by the many tourists from the GCC, Asia and Africa,” Cakmak said.

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International Medical travel Conference and Exhibition (IMTEC)

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