As part of the Greek government’s efforts to diversify the tourism products on offer, Deputy Tourism Minister Manos Konsolas recently said that the ministry was exploring the possibility of the creation of clusters involving hospitals, medical centers and hotels, in order to provide full wellness and health tourism services to visitors.
According to the deputy minister, the private-public partnerships would create the conditions for synergies between local hospitality businesses and health services paving the way for a whole new revenue-generating product that would include travel packages focused on health tourism.
Speaking at an event focusing on the conclusions of a study released by diaNEOsis on senior tourism and health tourism, Konsolas underlined the importance of diversifying, which he said can also contribute to the extension of the tourism season and make Greece competitive.
In this direction, Konsolas referred to the efforts being made to create the conditions to attract investments in health tourism and to include these under the government’s fast track approval framework.
Other issues key to setting firm foundations for the development of medical tourism, according to Konsolas, include implementing an institutional framework for the certification of health services offered, ensuring these are based on international quality and safety standards.
On a final note, the minister said Greece could reach out to the US, Russia, China, Germany, Scandinavian and Middle Eastern countries, and enter transnational agreements with insurance funds that would support Greece’s health tourism product.
Indicatively, according to the diaNEOsis study, the development of health and wellness tourism in Greece can potentially generate some 13.6 billion euros in revenues and 173,000 jobs over a five-year period.