GEORGE TOWN: The Georgetown Specialist Hospital is now open, boosting Penang's aim to become a medical tourism hub.
The RM90 million hospital offers various specialist services including Internal medicine, Nephrology, Orthopaedics and spine treatment, Gastroenterology, Hepatology, general surgery as well as Endoscopy and Urology.
Hospital chairman Datuk Dr Liong Men Long said services offered were at affordable prices compared to other private medical institution’s.
"We have done a market research to fix the rates and ours is between 10 per cent to 20 per cent cheaper than others
"Our aim is to provide affordable healthcare with ease and comfort to our customers," he said at the hospital’s opening ceremony today.
Currently the hospital houses 20 beds, with further expansion plans in the pipeline, to be undertaken within the next four years.
Phase 2 and 3 of the expansion will house 300 beds for patients as well as another 100 rooms as family accommodation units for patient's family members preferring to be near their loved ones.
"The overall investment is about RM350 million," he said.
Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow, who opened the hospital, also did the groundbreaking for Phase 2 and 3 of the project.
He said Penang received over 375,000 medical travellers which in turn contributed RM568 million to the coffers last year.
Last year, Malaysia saw RM1.5 billion received from 1.2 million healthcare travelers, with Penang contributing 31.27 per cent in terms of the number of patients as well as 37.87 per cent revenue for the country.
"The state government aspires to continuously make Penang an ideal location for medical tourism.
"We would like to call the healthcare providers to continuously enhance patient care quality and upgrade medical facilities for the benefit of the people," Chow said in his speech.