Press-release. The meeting of the Commission on the medical tourism development under the Public Council of the Ministry of Health of Ukraine.
April 29, 2014 Kyiv
The theme of the meeting: "The legalization of the medical tourism tour operators working"
Participants of the meetings were members of the Commission and invited guests interested in the development of the industry. All participants joint into a working group.
There are following trends in the current Ukrainian medical tourism market: increasing the flow of medical tourists, growing interest of tourism market players to medical tourism, active opening of medical tourism departments in travel agencies. Due to the lack of comprehensive medical education, low employees qualification and quality control absents there is a high risk to patients.
All members of the meeting agreed that medical tourism is relatively new segment of tourism market for Ukraine, it is directly related to the health and life of humans, so it should be a separate legal category.
Article 4 of the Law of Ukraine on tourism gives a classification of tourism types, one of which is “healthcare tourism", but obtaining a license forthcoming tour operator does not specify what kind of services will be provided, so medical tourism is not regulated by law.
Also Ukrainian legal framework does not include such a thing as a "travel agent" who works on the field of medical tourism. The activities of such entities must be based on fairness, honesty, responsibility, and understanding of providing medical services features, but the state and the public have to control this process.
The working group identified a range of major and secondary players on the medical tourism market, the impact of travel agencies, public organizations, associations, ministries on the formation and serving industry. Particular attention was paid to the close cooperation with the Ministry of Health of Ukraine, the Ministry of Justice and the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of Ukraine, as ones of the most important levers of influence on the legalization of medical tourism by making appropriate changes in the Ukrainian legislation.
Did not bypassed so painful for Ukraine questions as health insurance, it is developing, not formed insurance direction and has many contradiction problems. It causes frequent problematic situations abroad.
Also, commission members willingly shared their experience of cooperation with travel agencies, foreign medical tourism associations, charitable foundations; their sensible suggestions and recommendations carefully analyzed and taken into account in determining the main work directions of the Commission.
Through collegial discussion was made some key issues for further discussing and finding solutions.
We invite everyone to join our working group and make your contribution into tour operators working legalization in direction of medical tourism.
Head of Commission, Chairman of Ukrainian Association of Medical Tourism