A-G: PPP project could boost medical tourism in Fiji

THERE is potential to grow Fiji’s medical tourism with the proposed public private partnership project for Lautoka and Ba hospitals, says Minister for Economy Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum.

While speaking in Parliament this week, the Attorney-General said countries such as Australia, New Zealand and Japan could look to Fiji for high quality medical services in an environment that could assist in their recovery.

He said by going into a partnership with the Fiji National Provident Fund and an international certified hospital, services would improve and attract overseas clients.

He said the two new and improved hospitals had to be located in the Western Division which was considered a tourism hub.

“Everyone knows the Western Division is predominately where all the hotels are because that is where the Nadi International Airport is and Lautoka is there, it also fits in very well strategically in that respect,” he said.

He also explained that Australians who went offshore for medical treatment were offered assistance from their Government.

“Medicare, which is the national health insurance scheme of Australia, recognising the fact that there is a queue for elective surgeries have also now offered that to those Australians who go offshore.

“This is why we are insisting that if we get an internationally-certified hospital, we can get Australians to come and have elective surgeries.

“Not just that, we can also then throw in a two-week package at some hotel, recover after you have your surgery, get a suntan, whatever it is and they go back home.

“You create a whole new industry that is related to the medical field.”

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