The Jakarta Post
Eighty percent of patients in Island Hospital in Penang are Indonesian. (Shutterstock/Broewnis Photo)
Low-cost air carrier Citilink is offering many benefits for passengers who travel abroad, particularly for medical reasons. This benefit applies to passengers traveling to Penang, Malaysia, for example.
Tempo.co reported that the chief financial officer of Citilink, Fransetya Hutabarat, signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Tan Seang Aun, the executive director of the Penang Center of Medical Tourism (PMED).
The MOU was signed immediately after the maiden flight of Citilink from Jakarta to Penang landed on March 25.
“Citilink passengers can possibly enjoy a price reduction for medical treatments and pick-up service from the airport by the hospital,” Fransetya explained to tempo.com in Penang on Monday.
In the near future, Citilink is planning to add more benefits, most likely based on collaborations with hospitals in Penang. Hospital business practitioners in Penang reacted to Citilink’s venture to their city positively.
“We hope there will also be patients coming from Jakarta to Penang, not only from Medan,” said Dr. Hwang Vee Cherin, a pediatrician from Island Hospital in Penang. He later explained that most foreign patients getting medical treatment in Penang hailed from Medan, as the distance between two cities was closer. It only takes 40 minutes to fly from Medan to Penang.
Almost 80 percent of the patients in Island Hospital are Indonesian.
Gleneagle Hospital CEO Ivan Loh expected the direct flight from Jakarta to Penang would make traveling more convenient for the passengers, adding that passengers would be able to use Citilink boarding passes to enjoy attractive promotions.
The airline also signed an MOU with other parties in Penang, such as the local tourism authority, the hotel association and the Asian Masters Games Committee, which conducts the biggest sporting event in the Malaysian city.
Garnering four stars from Skytrax this year, Citilink has targeted regional expansions starting with its inaugural flight to Penang, Malaysia. (mut)