Medical Tourism in Jamaica a potential but not yet
Local stakeholders and members of the diaspora are still eyeing prospects for the island to establish a booming medical tourism sector by enticing foreigners to fly to Jamaica to seek world-class services. At a forum staged by Jamaica Promotions Corporation (JAMPRO) on September 29, various speakers made it clear that they would not give up on the vision.
While they acknowledged that it was important to improve Jamaica’s healthcare framework to benefit every citizen, the event mainly focused on building out the island’s medical tourism brand.
The forum, titled ‘Meeting the Needs of Patients: Strategies to Improve Quality and Safety for Health Care Organisations’, was staged through a partnership with JAMPRO, the Ministry of Health and Wellness, the Medical Association of Jamaica, and international healthcare accreditation entity Temos.
Many medical procedures involving foreigners take place at Jamaican facilities, but successes are downplayed. He explained that many people overseas have contacted him to discuss prospects of doing business in Jamaica. However, the island has no medically accredited facilities.
At the University Hospital of the West Indies, they are doing kidney transplants, which go unnoticed. We are doing things that should be recognized. You will get a whole lot more people coming down who are non-Jamaicans with insurance. There are only two accredited health facilities in the Caribbean – one in The Bahamas and another in the Cayman Islands.”
Medical Tourism Training Inc President Elizabeth Ziemba hailed the Government’s for its efforts to use medical tourism to boost the economy.