Thursday, February 26, 2015

Sabah upbeat on medical tourism


KOTA KINABALU: Medical tourism is a growing market in Sabah with the potential to attract Chinese tourists as they are familiar with the culture and Chinese language here.

KPJ Sabah Specialist Hospital chief executive officer Mohd Azhar Abdullah said KPJ complemented the government’s effort to attract tourists here.

For instance, the central marketing staff at KPJ tagged along with government agencies or business groups on road shows overseas to promote Malaysia, he said.

“Sabah has great potential for people to holiday and recuperate from their health problems,” Mohd Azhar said, adding the medical tourism promotion efforts were mostly targeted at countries in this region, including the Middle East and China.

“Chinese tourists are a big potential market because they are used to our culture and a lot of our people speak Mandarin.

“We are looking at the Middle East also, the Arabs,” he said in an interview during the lion dance performance organized by the hospital in conjunction with Chinese New Year here yesterday.

He said the KPJ hospital was as good as hospitals overseas, providing quality healthcare services at affordable prices.

“We are comparable to other hospitals in the region, such as Singapore. Whatever they have in Singapore, we have it here,” Mohd Azhar said.

He disclosed that a fair number of doctors at KPJ Sabah Specialist Hospital are locals, while some who are not locals are married to locals, which enabled the hospital to understand the local setting.

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