The number of foreigners getting medical treatment at the prestigious All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in the capital is on the rise since the last three years.
The number of foreign nationals treated at AIIMS has gone up to 544 in 2012 against 394 in 2010. The total number of foreigners treated at the Institute in 2011 was 491.
Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad said during the first two months of the current year, as many as 79 foreigners have already been treated at AIIMS.
Many foreign patients come to India to get cheap medical treatment as the country is increasingly being favoured as a medical tourism destination.
However, the total number of tourists coming in for medical treatment is still in its infancy and the total percentage of medical tourists is less as compared to the total tourists coming to the country.
The Minister denied that a large number of foreign patients getting treatment in AIIMS at subsidised rates got themselves falsely registered as Indians in collusion with brokers/touts to avail the facility.
Before getting treated at AIIMS, patients need to get themselves registered with the Foreign Registration office and the record of all such patients treated at AIIMS are maintained at the Foreign Regional Registration Office at R K Puram in Delhi.
Foreigner patients have to provide their demographic parameters along with relevant documents like copies of passport to verify their genuineness