Egypt uses augmented reality to promote medical tourism

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CAIRO – In an unprecedented move, the Egyptian General Authority for Healthcare recently announced the use of metaverse technology to promote medical tourism, providing customers around the world with a unique experience to visit healthcare facilities, revitalizing tourism and supporting the national economy.

Egypt’s tourism sector, which is one of the main sources of national income, has been hit hard by Russia’s war against Ukraine and before it by the repercussions of the coronavirus pandemic, which have pushed the Egyptian government to seek solutions and alternatives to stimulate and support tourism to compensate for the losses suffered in recent years.

Ahmed el-Sobky, chairman of the General Health Care Authority, announced the launch of “3D virtual reality” technology for the first time in Egypt to promote the authority’s project for medical tourism – dubbed “We are taking care of you in Egypt” – among Arabs, Africans and foreigners, on the sidelines of the Africa Health ExCon ​​held in New Cairo from June 5-7.

He explained in press releases that the launch of using metaverse technology to promote the medical tourism project provides a unique experience for travelers around the world.

Sobky noted that metaverse technology allows them to visit authority-affiliated health facilities in governorates with comprehensive health insurance (Port Said, Luxor, Ismailia) and provides them with a holistic journey into the virtual world by using 3D virtual reality technology to present them. to the amazing capabilities and facilities of these establishments, the hotel rooms and amenities, and the extent to which they match their needs and aspirations before dealing with them.

He said the launch of the new 3D virtual reality metaverse technology is the result of the authority’s efforts and its concern to provide intelligent virtual services worthy of Egypt’s reputation. The goal is to pave the way for an intelligent future filled with distinct virtual services that meet customer aspirations and contribute to the efficient use of time and effort.

Sobky explained, “It is also in line with the ambitions and strategy of the authority to transform its services towards the digital world and artificial intelligence, to strengthen its leadership role in the field of healthcare at scale world and achieve its vision of providing an advanced model of internationally approved quality healthcare in Egypt.

He added that the provision of such kind of virtual services leads to the achievement of Egypt Vision 2030 sustainable health development goals based on modern digital technology and produces positive results in the work of the health care sector. . This is another step towards a holistic artificial intelligence service, and yet another achievement added to the authority’s track record of achievements, he said.

Amr Sedky, former head of the parliamentary tourism and aviation committee, told Al-Monitor that promoting medical tourism in Egypt using the latest modern technologies is a good step to revitalize tourism and compensate for the losses caused. by various global conditions such as the coronavirus pandemic. and Russia’s war against Ukraine.

But at the same time, he believes that the government and parliament play a major role in promoting medical tourism, which Egypt is famous for, whether regionally or globally, in order to achieve record revenues that support the national economy. This can be done by speeding up the publication of the medical tourism law, which has not yet been ratified, he added.

Sedky explained that this law will define the competences, responsibilities and tasks of the health and tourism sector, as well as the joint coordination between the two parties to organize business and develop health tourism in Egypt. He noted that the conflict between the two sectors of tourism and health in Egypt is a serious matter that threatens the successful promotion of this important project for the national economy.

He added that the use of the latest modern technological means to promote and market medical tourism is promising and indicates the government’s awareness of the country’s distinct sites and medical and hospital tourism which do not exist in many parts of the world. world. Such a measure would attract more tourists to visit Egypt, boost tourism and support the national economy.

Yaman el-Hamaki, professor of economics and business at Ain Shams University, said the Egyptian government is very interested in finding unconventional solutions to boost tourism, as medical tourism is one of the projects which will play a major role in increasing the number of foreign tourists, which would have a positive effect on the national economy.

She told Al-Monitor that using the latest modern technologies to promote medical tourism increases the chances of success in revitalizing and sustaining tourism, and hastens the achievement of desired goals, including reaching global audiences and encouraging them to visit Egypt.

She said the government’s multiple solutions to support tourism is an important issue, as there is a trend of expanding archaeological finds in various parts of the country, as well as the use of modern technology in the medical tourism marketing.

All these measures, she added, would push the revitalization of the tourism sector and increase the number of tourists visiting Egypt to enjoy its distinct sites, thus positively reflecting the national economy.

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