Philippines Department of Tourism aims to boost medical tourism

The Department of Tourism (DOT) has plans to boost medical tourism in the country – and increase public awareness for such in the global market.

Tourism Secretary Berna Romulo-Puyat said the pandemic-induced crisis brought into light the importance of medical travel and wellness tourism.

“We see so much untapped potential in the health and wellness industry. With world-class hospitals and facilities, skilled doctors and nurses, and the Filipino brand of hospitality, the Philippines is poised to become an attractive destination for medical tourism,” Puyat stressed.

“Currently, we have been implementing measures that will further develop the country as a medical tourism destination in a calibrated approach, including the development of an internal ecosystem and network of facilities in the country to accommodate concerns and issues surrounding this tourism product,” she added.

According to her, the DOT has developed a gold standard in approaching health and safety for meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions (MICE) events, following the successful hosting of the 21st World Travel and Tourism (WTTC) Global Summit in Manila last April, as well as institutionalizing health and safety in tourism activities.

Likewise, Puyat noted on the Department’s partnership with the Department of Health (DOH) and Makati Medical Center to attend to the medical needs of tourists.

She also cited the DOT’s ongoing coordination with relevant national government agencies and local government units (LGUs) to get tourism workers vaccinated against COVID-19, which has led to a 98% inoculation rate and helped restore confidence of people to travel to and within the Philippines.

Untapped Potential

Juergen T. Steinmetz, a delegate in the recent WTTC Summit, shared his experience following the medical treatment at the Makati Medical Center for his left leg–which was diagnosed to be inflicted by a flesh-eating bacteria.

“It’s a secret to be revealed and in the making to come out and go viral. The Philippines will become the number one destination for medical tourism,” Steinmetz quipped in his recent article published by

“All the ingredients are here. Excellent world-class doctors and facilities, nurses that keep the standard for high-quality care around the world, and a beautiful country, wonderful beaches, good food, and exciting cities,” he added.

Steinmetz also noted the considerably cheaper medical costs in the Philippines compared to other countries.

Meanwhile, the DOT introduced its newly appointed director for medical, health and wellness tourism, Dr. Paulo Benito S. Tugbang.

Prior to his appointment, Tugbang led the Medical Travel and Wellness Tourism Program of the DOH and served with the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) Secretariat as the Technical Lead. Dr. Tugbang is a registered medical doctor, as well as a board top-notcher nurse and midwife.

Click here to read Steinmetz’ article on Philippines’ Medical Tourism:

Balikbayan Media Center

Balikbayan Magazine's Media Center serves an audience in 60 countries and 101 cities throughout the World to ignite, drive, and fuel the economic development, progression, and modernisation of the Philippines. Our Media Center curates only the most critical, vital, useful, entertaining, and sometimes amusing information released from both the public and private sector. Our editorial team strongly believes that a well-rounded and well-informed society is a thriving society.

Spotlighting the growth, development, and progression of the Philippines since 2009. Balikbayan Magazine is a publication of the Asian Journal Media Group.

Copyright © 2009-2023 Asian Journal Media Group.
All Rights Reserved.