The tourism and health are concepts linked so that either together or separately affect the economy of countries and are an important part of the political social, because health is not only an indicator of development human, but also a resource to encourage economic growth to achieve development, the tourism sector becomes important for the survival and economic growth of Latin American countries since much of our continent knows the enormous potential that tourism offers to their economies.
Health is a factor that often goes unnoticed when planning a trip, despite being a fundamental part since it is considered both the receiving population and the tourist who travel, either for health reasons or for recreation .
In a tourist destination, certain attention must be paid to different determinants in terms of health problems , related to their geographical location, the environment , social dynamics , destination of waste, etc.
In summary, water is for man a source of life and health. Currently, HEALTH TOURISM is of great importance as not only are facilities where water therapies are used , but over time the concept was extended to other techniques such as aromatherapy, massage of different types, meditation, yoga, Reiki and many others. All this has among its objectives to combat the most typical evils of these times, such as depression and stress , as well as rejuvenate, lose weight or improve the spiritual state .
It is very important to talk about Health Tourism since it is the Tourism of the future and is focused on solving problems that daily life generates such as stress, neurosis , obesity , in pleasant places and specialized in them.
Keywords: health, tourism, tourists, residents, visitors, social welfare, economic development.
Because there is little information on the topic of health tourism, it was decided to carry out an investigation regarding the importance of the study of health tourism, since many aspects that are mentioned here, most of the people do not know and it is due to the lack of diffusion part of the special authorities in tourism and health.
When we link the health sector with the tourism sector it is decided to explore the theme “Health Tourism”, taking two main axes: The health of tourists, and Tourism for health reasons
In developing this work , we rely on the concepts of tourism, health, and health tourism, as well as what health tourism serves us, in what it consists, with what disciplines of study it complements, in such a way to establish or look for your specific market segment , in addition to knowing where it is offered or where it is located; what regulations these establishments follow. It is necessary to know that institutions offer information about this very interesting and unexplored subject.
Since it is a very interesting topic because of all the factors that intervene in its development and in the environment in which it occurs, it is important that people who like to travel know about the environmental conditions, both favorable and unfavorable. Thus, our main objective is to disseminate briefly but understandably the benefits, disadvantages and their effects on the population and visitors, so that with this article after reading it you will be aware of the most outstanding aspects of health tourism and not focus on the SPA `s.
WHAT IS IT?
Health tourism is a little explored field, as there is rarely awareness of what these two words encompass, to begin with we will define the concepts of health, tourism and finally we will form a definition of health tourism.
Tourism: “Tourism is the activity that involves the temporary displacement of people from their place of origin (tourists), and the reception of visitors by a certain community (hosts).”
Tourism is based on the use of natural resources (beaches, forests, mountains, rivers, lakes, waterfalls, etc.) and cultural (festivals, traditions, historical monuments, popular art , etc.). That as a whole are part of the country’s tourist heritage .
Health : health is the physical state in which the body normally exercises its functions .2
In the WHO constitution in 1946, defines health as “the state of complete physical, mental and social welfare” now this definition is apparent, if we consider that really less than 20% of the world population is completely healthy .
With the above definitions you get to …
Health Tourism : tourism focused on a group that travels interested in enjoying places where they find healthy fun, educational and recreational and at the same time take care of their health. / Tourists who go in search of climates and ecosystems that are beneficial for their health and that in their place of residence they do not enjoy it.
The benefits of health tourism are varied and are in accordance with the requirements of tourists who travel in search of improving their health, whether they are curing chronic diseases, combating addictions , weight control , general organic reactivation, etc.
Health tourism is mainly related to the following disciplines:
To have a clearer idea of the relationship between these disciplines we can handle the following services focused on the tourist’s health:
Great diversity of massages which strongly influence the health of people, since they improve circulation, relax muscles , help with digestion and stimulate the lymphatic system , these massages provide a wonderful sense of well-being. In this case, the following massages are carried out:
- BACK MASSAGE
- MASSAGE FEET AND TIRED LEGS
- HOLISTIC MASSAGE
- MASSAGE WITH AROMATHERAPY
- THERAPEUTIC MASSAGE
- COUPLE MASSAGE
- PRE-NATAL MASSAGE
The best balancing therapies that provide a balance of body, mind and spirit, which open a wider and deeper dimension of our being and connect us with that inner space of peace and well-being.
- MASSAGE WITH FLORAL AND NECTAR ESSENCES
- MASSAGE WITH EXOTIC HERBS
- MASSAGE WITH MUSCULAR MASSAGE GUN
- GRAPE ENVELOPE
- AVOCADO & YOGURT ENVELOPE
- CHOCOLATE ENVELOPE
- MASSAGE WITH MUD
- MUD WITH MUD
Fabulous exfoliating treatments to renew and revitalize the skin . Exfoliation is the basic and indispensable requirement to cleanse, remove dead cells and activate the circulatory and lymphatic system, thus preparing the skin to be able to receive the benefits of any natural plant and essential oil assets .
- AQUA FACIAL
- RADIANT FACIAL
- FACIAL ENERGIA PARA CABALLERO
- DEEP CLEANING FACIAL
Fabulous treatments that will help you prepare your skin for before exposing it to the sun, during and after. Receive the benefits of advanced products and treatments unique in the world that will provide perfect care and tanning with a high level of protection for all your skin before and after sunbathing. The main treatments in this case are the following:
- • MILK BATH
- • SOLAR EXFOLIATION
- • EXFOLIATION YOGURT AND PAPAYA
- • SILK SKIN MOISTURIZING TREATMENT
Hydrotherapy provides great therapeutic benefits by combining a rich diversity of plant extracts, essential oils and water from the sea. We can enjoy the following therapies:
- • DETOXICANT BALNEOTHERAPY
- • RELAXING BALNEOTHERAPY
- • REVITALIZING BALNEOTHERAPY
- • TROPICAL BALNEOTHERAPY WITH PETALOS DE FLORES
- • SPORT BALNEOTHERAPY
WHO IS HEALTH TOURISM DIRECTED
Health tourism is for all those who seek not only maintain but increase their state of health during your vacation because health is undoubtedly the most precious of tourists on holiday. The best thing about health tourism is that you can do it individually or as a group, as you enjoy it better. For this there is no age or sex and is intended to cure some disease or simply improve your well-being.
That is why health tourism must be provided in an environment of adequate quality to recover the physical and mental strength of people since a properly maintained environment not only attracts visitors but is a very effective measure to protect your health .
So you have no excuse to live the wonderful experience offered by health tourism.
WHERE IT IS
Nowadays, with the help of technology , new techniques have been developed to treat water , among them in the area of medicine .
The most common ills that afflict most people, have also been treated with the help of water, such as depression , stress , aging, weight loss and improve the spiritual state .
In the world there are many countries that have pleasant places where water from its chemical, geological and medicinal properties, is used for recreation and healing of people. Among these countries are: Argentina, Germany , Cuba , Czechoslovakia, Spain , France , Hungary, New Zealand, Romania, Uruguay and without falling behind Mexico .
Our country has several sites, among which the States of:
- Guanajuato .
- Michoacan .
- Morelos .
In these places, water contains greater chemical and physical properties, suitable for recreation, recreation, recovery and recovery of the human body.
The healing waters in Mexico, mainly the existence of thermal waters, have given way to the construction of facilities such as the Water Parks and Spas, as well as other spaces called “Spa”, which have evolved according to the global standards in service and quality. The main difference between a SPA and a spa or therma, is that in the latter the water has mineral-medicinal properties, unlike the SPA where water is the common one brought.
Those who come to Mexico with the intention of curing some of their discomforts, will not only find a natural, coarse and effective medicine such as its thermal waters, but will also enjoy the best landscapes and the best care .
Mexico not only counts with excellent SPA establishments but also you can enjoy its surroundings, and most of these establishments are located in the best Mexican beaches and other places that also has a pleasant climate and many tourist attractions to know.
These are some places where the best SPAs are found in Mexico:
Santiago, Querétaro .
Cuernavaca, Morelos .
Acapulco, Guerrero .
Cancun, Quintana Roo .
Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco .
Manzanillo, Colima .
Huatulco, Oaxaca .
Los Cabos, Baja California Sur
INSTITUTIONS THAT REGULATE HEALTH TOURISM.
The Ministry of Tourism and the Mexican Association of Spas, with the support of the Mexican Institute for Standardization and Certification, joined their efforts to elaborate the Mexican Standard of Spas, which has the purpose of offering this type of facility an instrument to guide them, clarify and simplify compliance with international quality standards in its services and facilities.
Therefore, Sectur is the institution in charge of regulating and approving all that derives from tourism, including health tourism.
One of the factors that least influences our decision to travel, is the state of health in which we are, cause of this is the lack of promotion by the health and tourism authorities about the importance it represents.
Although it is true that often changing the environment around us on a daily basis (which affects our health gradually) represents a great advantage for both the tourism sector and our health. Most tourists do not seek information related to the health hazards associated with their trips , therefore precautions are not taken that later result in serious consequences.
The fantasy of rest, fun and health care can be realized at tours like Desert Safari Deals. Health tourism offers places where health and wellbeing merge creating a sense of balance for visitors .
Some of the elements that health tourism offers to increase health status during vacations are:
Great variety of body massages
Special nutrition programs
Yoga and meditation
High-tech gyms life-fitness
The aforementioned services are designed so that you and your partner can enjoy the best vacations of your life, so there is no excuse to enjoy it in a big way.
Effects on the receiving population
The main impacts of tourism in the receiving countries are the following:
Sexually transmitted diseases. Tourists when they travel adopt behaviors different from those they have in their home. Sex is more risky and sometimes its practice becomes even illegal, with this situation there is a source of employment for men and women that represents an increasing exploitation of children and young adolescents .
Alcohol abuse . During travel, alcoholic beverages are more present, which can cause serious accidents .
Use of drugs . When traveling our change of behavior can cause fatal risks not only for us but also for the people around us.
Ecological deterioration. Often the tourists do not respect the places they visit and are devoted to destruction and that ultimately accounts will not spend much time on that site, this factor translates into loss instead of a profit to the site visitors since with their actions, the only thing they do is to pollute the environment and deteriorate the ecosystem .
Importation of cultural values from other countries. It is normal that tourists do not adapt to the way of life of residents and try to change their traditions and customs to not feel out of place, however, ideally they should learn and respect aspects of a different culture .
Security. Tourists are usually seen as threats because most of the year you enjoy a certain tranquility and when visitors arrive, you consider that this situation has a negative influence on the security with which you live. Considering this situation, the positive effects such as the income of foreign currency , the increase of jobs, the improvement of local infrastructure and the provision of health and environmental services, among others , are not usually considered .
The situations mentioned above can be avoided through simple solutions , include the following:
Influence so that national policies protect children and adolescents against sexual exploitation.
Develop specific measures to prevent alcohol and drug abuse.
Protect the ecosystem and the environment to keep the land , sea and air clean.
Promote our values, traditions and habits that are part of our culture, through dialogue between health personnel and specific groups of the population in order to promote healthy environments and lifestyles and that our customs, heritage and behavior are the that prevail the next century.
Impact of health (tourists)
Tourists may present discomforts to their health at the beginning of the trip, as soon as the lag of schedules or dizziness begins, these discomforts do not usually pose a risk to health, only for those of advanced age and who already have health problems .
Attention is usually focused on diarrhea caused by parasites, bacteria or some type of virus , this is primarily associated with the consumption of contaminated food or water , we must not exclude the waters of pools and coastal waters, where they are sometimes associated with infections gastrointestinal, respiratory and also cutaneous.
Consumption of contaminated fish and shellfish is associated with the infection of hepatitis A, this is due to the presence of high concentrations of toxins produced by ciguatera water, lately there has been talk of a respiratory disorder involving a bacterium called LEGIONELLA PNEUMOPHILA and that Living mainly in the systems of water and air conditioning in hotels and especially indoors.
There are other potential health risks , but only unimmunized tourists are exposed, the best-known microbes are amoebas, and they are related to the consumption of water and food in unhealthy conditions. Another group of health risks for tourists are those transmitted by vectors such as mosquitoes, ticks, lice, fleas, etc. Examples of these risks are diseases of malaria, dengue , yellow fever ; These are the conditions that are diagnosed with certain frequency.
The responsibility for the health of the tourist lies not only in the local authorities but also in the potential tourists, for this purpose you should get as much information as possible about the place of destination. As well as having the most recommended vaccines : vaccine against typhoid fever, hepatitis B, poliomyelitis and rabies.
While the potential health risks involved in travel and tourism are recognized, fortunately there is a large amount of means to eliminate or reduce these risks through the application of well-known procedures for food handling and environmental health. . This requires a concentrated effort from local authorities and potential travelers. Another important factor is health education and health promotion, as well as environmental hygiene are essential to generate appropriate attitudes and behaviors.
Generally speaking, in a healthy environment it is a seal of quality for tourists, the environment is a determining factor in the health of tourists and that a properly maintained environment will not only attract visitors, but also which represents an effective way to maintain health.
TOURISM FOR HEALTH REASONS.
Undoubtedly tourism is intimately linked with the issue of health. The relationship between health and tourism has long been recognized, therefore potential risks to health are also considered; as a consequence of the trips, which are derived from the contact of the visitors with the environment and the host population.
Health issues related to travel and tourism have fostered strong ties of work between the organization World Health Organization (WHO) and the Organization World Tourism (OMT), with the collaboration of other organizations such as the Organization of American States Americans ( OAS ).
The WHO has established criteria and guidelines on the quality of drinking water and water for recreational purposes, the food service on airplanes and for the publication of texts such as the sanitation guide in tourist establishments and the guide for health and sanitation in air transport .
Starting from the fact that people travel for different reasons: business , congresses, cultural enrichment, visits to friends, we arrive at the oldest and most frequent reason for health tourism.
Traveling is synonymous with liberation, and the 1983 World Tourism Meeting established the right to rest as a natural consequence of the right to work. In this context, tourism satisfies the basic human need to recover mental and physical well-being.
As a result of what was mentioned in the previous paragraph , the popularity of health centers and thermal baths as holiday places has grown, this is another indication of the relationship between health and tourism, this is known as ” therapeutic tourism 2. Many of these places associate leisure with professional attention to lose weight, acquire good physical condition, as well as programs aimed at the rehabilitation and treatment of drug addiction and alcoholism .
Many times these medical services are part of a tourist package and special accommodation resources are available for these purposes.
On the other hand tourists can feel the impact on health at the beginning of the trip, due to scheduling or dizziness, which although these discomforts are not serious for health, if they cause discomfort.
Normally more attention is paid to diarrhea, associated with the consumption of contaminated water or food, as well as respiratory, gastrointestinal and skin infections.
In recent years, outbreaks of legionnaires’ diseases have become very visible, especially respiratory disorders caused by bacteria that inhabit water and air conditioning systems in hotels and other closed environments.
Other health risks are those transmitted by vectors, such as mosquitoes, ticks, lice, fleas and mites.
Malaria, dengue fever, yellow fever and lyme disease are diseases transmitted by vectors that are diagnosed with a certain frequency in tourists.
It is valid to say that the environment is an important determinant of the health of tourists and that maintaining it properly not only attracts visitors, but is a very effective measure to protect their health.
The responsibility for the tourist’s health lies not only with the local authorities, but also with the potential tourists who must inform themselves about the place of destination, so that together with the authorities the travelers use measures of environmental sanitation and medical prevention.
Currently, sexually transmitted diseases and ecological deterioration as a consequence of tourism are the main concerns in this area.
By mentioning health tourism in a more general way, we will now focus on the subtopic: tourism for health reasons.
People travel for various reasons, but nevertheless the main and oldest one is for comfort and feeling healthy.
Tourism satisfies the basic human need to recover mental and physical well-being.
Traditionally tourism for health reasons or therapeutic tourism was related to recreational tourism, combining pleasure travel with health problems. Generally it is linked to social strata of high economic capacity and the flow of tourists was from underdeveloped countries to developed countries, or between developed countries.
Although this trend persists, (it is estimated that 2% of visitors to the United States of America do so for health reasons) the increase in the cost of medical care in developed countries, coinciding with the development of health services of some underdeveloped countries at a lower cost , makes this traditional tendency tend to your investment ; Some countries in the region such as Mexico, Costa Rica , Colombia , Brazil, Uruguay and Argentina venture into this activity. Cuba has developed this type of tourism offering medical services to patients in Latin America and the Caribbean and to a lesser extent in Europe and North America by offering some novel and effective treatments in some pathologies and in general at lower costs than in the countries of origin from the patients. In recent years, the extension of health tourism in underdeveloped countries of origin has allowed relatively modest sectors economically access to treatments that require state-of-the-art technology and whose costs are inaccessible to them in developed countries.
Another form of health tourism is that which occurs as a result of collaboration between countries with or without the participation of international organizations. The exchange of patients, medical samples to be processed, as well as the training and development of human resources , constitute increasingly important aspects of this activity.
The flow of health professionals, particularly doctors from the underdeveloped countries of Latin America to the United States of America, was a common practice until a few decades ago. Although this trend has decreased, it still persists in the case of nurses and paramedical personnel.
Studies carried out by PAHO / WHO in several countries of the region demonstrate the awareness in the public and private sectors of the need to develop health tourism offers through strategies and action plans that allow access to the international market .
Restrictions existing in national legislations, the lack of reliable statistics on the activity, the limitations of possibilities of participation of the public sector by restricting the use of resources destined to the population, the lack of financial resources for the modernization of technologies and the lack of private sector financing , are some of the restrictive factors that influence the development of this activity
Tourism is no longer perceived as a privilege or as a luxury, but as a basic right to recover mental and physical well-being, restoring the ability to lead an active life. Although tourism is motivated by the desire to regain health, it is not free of risks to health itself. Tourism can affect not only the health of tourists, but also that of the communities that receive them. However, most of these risks can be avoided or reduced through environmental hygiene, health promotion and disease prevention.