Bali, the Island of the Gods, is targeted to be one of the medical travel destinations to boost tourist visits. As part of phase one of the development plan, officials are looking to open a new international hospital here.
“We plan to develop health tourism by opening an international hospital for specific diseases, such as cancer and tumours,” said Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan, speaking at the virtual 2021 Bali Economic and Investment Forum in early April.
Bali dependent on international tourism
It seems that this plan has been officially in the making since 2020, when the province’s health-based tourism development was first brought up. Luhut had noted that Indonesia had recorded the highest number of outbound medical travellers, totalling 600,000 – most of which visited Malaysia and Singapore due to superior and more affordable healthcare services.
Bali is among those destinations worst affected economically by the Covid pandemic. Tourism contributes to around 60 per cent of the Indonesian island’s economy, and over the past year, officials here have been desperate to get the island back open to tourists. In December 2020, the island adopted health and safety protocols to help encourage travellers back in.
Attracting medical travellers would give the country another avenue for rebuilding its economy.