Medical Tourism to benefit Afghans in healthcare sector


Islamabad: Rehman Medical Institute in partnership with Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) and Sky Travels and Tours has introduced Medical Tourism for Afghans to facilitate the patients from Afghanistan to get cost-efficient and quality healthcare facilities in Pakistan.
Dr. Talha Dewan Ashfaq, Director Operations, Rehman Medical Institute Mr. Muhammad Reza Qasmi, MD Sky Travels and Tours signed Memorandum of Understanding. Air Marshal Mr. Arshad Malik, CEO PIA, Mr. Shafiq Ur Rehman, CEO Rehman Medical Institute, Mr. Turab Ashghar, Head of Marketing, Rehman Medical Institute, Mr. Tariq Khan, Head of Department Business Development, Rehman Medical Institute were also present at the MOU Signing Ceremony.
The agreement is aimed to promote Medical Tourism to help the Afghan community, who has been suffering with poor health system since long. This agreement gives an invaluable opportunity for Afghans to receive better medical treatment at a reasonable cost, mainly complex medical procedures, such as Trans-plants and other complicated surgeries. Rehman Medical Institute is a well renowned institute with a good reputation and has offered its services to not only locals but also Afghan citizens at a reasonable price.
Health care system in Afghanistan is facing a lot of challenges that are not limited to unavailability of qualified doctors and institutes, medical equipment, power cuts, etc.
We do recognize that travelling for health is not a new fact or a situation but people of Afghanistan have been striving solutions or destinations that can provide services and benefits helping certain illnesses.
Until 2016, Pakistan remained the top destination for Afghan medical tourists because of common culture, language and less expensive treatments than anywhere else in the region.
The government of Pakistan has recently started taking strategic measures to revive the medical tourism by easing the visa process and increasing the duration to one year.
Air Marshal Mr. Arshad Malik, CEO PIA said that, the initiative between Rehman Medical Institute and Sky Travels would facilitate the patients from Afghanistan to get quality healthcare facilities and enhance the bilateral relationship between the neighboring counties. PIA has expanded its flights from 3 to 5 flights to accommodate more visitors.
Mr. Shafiq Ur Rehman, CEO Rehman Medical Institute appreciated the invaluable support of PIA and Sky Travels and Tours for implementing this initiative in Pakistan. The Rehman Medical Institute would provide a dedicated health service to the patients visiting from Afghanistan. We will ensure that, the patients would get cost-efficient and timely medical care. The patients would also be provided e-consultation with doctors, air ambulance facilities. Rehman Medical Institute is state of the art healthcare hospital with 500-bed and 37 specialties. According to Dr. Moeed Yousaf
Mr. Muhammad Reza Qasmi, MD Sky Travels and Tours said that, Rehman Medical Institute has strengthened the medical tourism sector since 2002 between Afghanistan and Pakistan, he further said that PIA and Sky Travels increased the flights.

According to Dr. Moeed Yousaf , Special Assistant on National Security, a multiplier effect of additional US$ 2 billion can be achieved from medical tourism, religious tourism, transport services, manpower, pharmaceuticals, marble & granite and salt products. He apprised that there is potential of additional exports worth US $ 16.7 billion to UAE, USA, China, Germany, UK, France, Indonesia, Spain, Algeria and Malaysi

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