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Over 6L international patients travel to India; MVT hits USD 5-6B

Patient Herbert from Tanzania, suffering from non-Hodgkin lymphoma (A type of blood cancer), came to India for treatment last year. Now, After two months, with proper diagnosis of the disease and three cycles of Immunotherapy Chemo treatment in India, he is going back to his country with the chemo protocol and plans to return for review and follow-up treatment in six months.

It is not just one case; thousands of cancer patients across the world travel to India every year for correct diagnosis and advanced treatment with the hope of life.

Today, Indian health care is reaching its epitome with world-class hospitals offering state-of-the-art treatment at a fraction of the cost of developed countries, a large pool of brilliant medical and paramedical professional skills, highly advanced medical technology, compliance with international quality standards, and rich data sets that can drive research for better treatment pathways, early detection, and new drug development.

Every year, More than 600,000 international patients travel to India for advanced care for Cancer, Heart, orthopedic, IVF, and Organ transplants, making Medical Value travel worth 5-6 Billion USD.

Among all health issues, cancer is the most deadly disease that can put life at risk. As per the last five years’ data, Cancer cases have taken unprecedented growth worldwide. There have been spikes in cancer cases among the youth due to modern lifestyles, processed foods, pollution, and diagnostic advancements, along with genetic factors.

As per Global Cancer Statistics -there were 18.1 million new cancer cases in 2020, with 9.3 million cases in men and 8.8 million in women. Breast and lung cancers contribute 12.5% and 12.2% of total cases, being the most common cancers. 3rd most common cancer – Colorectal cancer contributes 10.7% of all cancer cases.

Pankaj Chandna, Co-founder of Vaidam Health, a leading Medical tourism Company in India, states, “We receive multiple cancer enquiries on around the world. The best cancer hospitals in India offer all modalities of treatment, including diagnostics like PET CT, PET MRI, Biopsy, tumor markers, dedicated teams of onco-surgeons, medical-radiation oncologists, availability of the latest drugs with treatment by cyberknife, immunotherapy, molecular targeted therapy, dendritic cell therapy (DCT) & proton therapy.”

Adding to this, Manoj Kumar- GM- International Business at Artemis Hospitals, a JCI-accredited hospital in Gurugram, the cost-effectiveness of treatment, quality care, holistic approach, minimal waiting time, and embracing patients with warmth and dignity, gives unwavering support throughout their treatment journey.

India’s most prominent hospital chain, Apollo Group of Hospitals, is a trailblazer in cancer care. Its Apollo Proton Cancer Centre (APCC) is the first & only proton therapy center in South Asia and the Middle East in the battle to win over cancer. Proton beam therapy (PBT) is an advanced form of radiotherapy, able to treat cancers just as effectively. Still, it delivers less radiation to other healthy body parts surrounding the tumor.

Fortis Memorial Research Institute has many case studies on blood cancer treatment and it has done more than 1000 successful bone marrow transplants.

These & many such hospitals are contributing significantly to India’s position as a medical tourism destination.

Dr Deep Goel, Principal director and GI cancer surgeon head at BLK Max Hospital said, “Today, we have precise and accurate robotic surgery. We can do next-generation sequencing to understand cancer genetics in a particular individual and choose the right patient for high-end chemotherapy and immunotherapy.

Dr Sumant Gupta, Director of Metro Cancer Institute (Executive committee member of the Indian Society of Oncology, Breast Cancer Foundation-India), says access to generic drugs, High-end procedures like Indigenous CAR T cells, and bone marrow transplants at 50 to 90% less prices in comparison to other countries gives distinct place to India in the cancer treatment.

Along with a multidisciplinary treatment approach, International patients find India a comfort zone, be it quality care excellence, Language support, easy access to hospitals, food & economic accommodation option facilities. Medical value travel companies like Vaidam Health ( provide treatment & logistics assistance to patients, making their medical journey hassle-free.

Moreover, the Indian government has made remarkable efforts to improve medical infrastructure and streamlined the medical visa process to facilitate longer stays of international patients. In 2019, before Covid-19 struck, 6.97 lakh people (seven percent of the total international tourists) traveled to India on medical visas.

Today, world-renowned Indian cancer hospitals, the transformative impact of innovative technologies for early detection, unparalleled cancer treatment with increased success rate, excellent care, and administrative and logistic support factors strengthen India’s position as the most promising destination for affordable cancer care treatment. SRV Media

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