Menu

UNWTO/ETC Roundtable discusses wellness and medical tourism

  • Published by Ozgur Tore

unwtoThe Roundtable ‘Exploring Health Tourism’ gathered a group of international experts in Budapest, Hungary, to better understand and explore the growing segment of wellness and medical tourism. The meeting was convened by the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) and the European Travel Commission (ETC), as part of their joint research programme, with the support of the Hungarian Tourism Agency.

The two-day event held in Budapest gathered experts from the World Health Organization (WHO), the European Union (EU), the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), the European Spas Association, the Global Wellness Institute and Spaincares among others. Representatives from the health-related tourism sector from Hungary, Lithuania, Malaysia and Mexico attended the event.

Gusztáv Bienerth, Hungarian Commissioner for Tourism, highlighted the importance of health-related tourism in Hungary’s tourism sector, as well as the role of the country in the global market of health tourism, while underlining the relevance of the event.

Discussions were based on the ongoing ETC and UNWTO research on health tourism, a complex and not yet well-defined segment. This report is the first attempt to set a coherent conceptualization of health tourism and define the motivations behind travelers looking for health-related services.

“The need to better understand an emerging, global, complex and rapidly changing phenomenon such as wellness and medical tourism has become essential to tap into its growth potential”, said Márcio Favilla, UNWTO Executive Director for Operational Programmes and Institutional Relations.

“For ETC and UNWTO it is very important that we provide tourism authorities, managers and experts with a better understanding of the health tourism phenomenon and jointly cooperate to identify and provide a consistent terminology that lays the foundations for this promising sector”, said Eduardo Santander, Executive Director of ETC.

Participants debated the taxonomy proposed in the research to agree on a consistent terminology to define and describe the system of travelling for health purposes. Furthermore, the Roundtable explored the latest trends shaping health tourism and how tourism destinations can tap into these opportunities.

The final report establishing common grounds for a health-related tourism taxonomy will be published by the end of 2016.

Advertisement

Destinations

Best of Greek Islands with Celestyal Cruises

Best of Greek Islands with Celestyal Cruises

In Summer 2016, I had chance to sail to Greek Islands with the Celestyal Cruises. In an organization with Karavan Cruises, travelers enjoyed best of Greek islands with Celestyal and received a compl...

Unique and Luxurious Vacation Destination in Turkey: Cappadocia

Unique and Luxurious Vacation Destination in Turkey: Cappadocia

ftnNEWS would like to present you a unique vacation idea here in Turkey: Cappadocia Region. Located on the central Anatolia plateau within a volcanic landscape sculpted by erosion to form a successi...

Fascinating Tunisia

Fascinating Tunisia

Recently I have visited Tunisia as a familiarization trip organized by the Tunisia Tourism Ministry with the support of Tunis Air. Tunisia is not only a beach holiday destination. It also offers a r...