WORLD HEALTH AND WELLNESS TOURISM ASSOCIATION
The Health and Wellness Tourism has growing and showing a consistent development all over the world.
Between 2012 and July 2017, the Portuguese Association of Health and Wellness Tourism (Associação Portuguesa de Turismo de Saúde e Bem-Estar), carried out a remarkable work in the dynamisation of the sector in the seven touristic regions of Portugal, through the organisation of congresses, seminars, workshops, as well as giving information to the market.
Following this work, the World Health and Wellness Tourism Association (AMTSBE) was legally created through a notarial deed on July 24, 2017. The Association is based in Algarve region, Portugal.
A group of experts from various fields of knowledge (physicians, sociologists, psychologists, geographers, economists, architects, ecologists, tourism experts and others) from various countries from the five continents decided to create a worldwide Health and Wellness Tourism Association to promote the multidisciplinarity, interdisciplinarity, transdisciplinarity and the holism to understand the complexity of the field.
The core founding group of the AMTSBE was formed by the Professors of the University of Algarve, whose for more than twenty years have been researching, working and teaching in the field of Health and Wellness Tourism.
During this time were held two international congresses (2008 and 2012), plus several books and articles were published at international level.
The founding group has been extending the activities to other specialists from different regions of Portugal, and later to several countries of the five continents and archipelagos.
In the field of Health and Wellness Tourism there are several national and international associations that work on specific inner or secondaries products as: Thermalism, Thalassotherapy, SPAs, Medical Tourism, Aesthetic Tourism, and Climatism, usually within a geographical area.
The AMTSBE advocates an integrated and holistic Health and Wellness Tourism paradigm.
In this sense, the AMTSBE presents the following differentiating foundations according with their positioning:
1. To conceptualize Health and Wellness Tourism as a composite product, which integrates all inner or secondaries products (Thermalism, Thalassotherapy, SPAs, Medical Tourism, Aesthetic Tourism, Climatism, as well as Accessible Tourism).
2. To promote a global geographic approach (countries of the five continents and archipelagos – Caribbean, Macaronesia, Maldives, Mauritius, Polynesia and Seychelles).
3. To conceive Health and Wellness as an holistic and integrated concept.
4. To privilege the paradigm of integrative medicine that encompasses all medicines:
conventional/allopathic, predictive, homeopathic, ayurvedic, chinese medicine, naturopathic and ethnic.
5. To promote excellence, safety, ethics in Health and Wellness Tourism, especially in the field of Public Health (the control of hospital infections, legionella, as well as better air quality, water proper to human consumption, a cleaner sea and healthier thermalism).
6. To promote environmental quality through: monitoring all kind of waters, lakes, lagoons, reservoirs and ornamental fountains, aiming to eliminate the transmission of arboviruses by arthropods; also the quality control of the oceanic and fluvial beaches, as well as of the marshes, mangroves and sands;
implementing the basic sanitation sewerage and wastewater treatment plants; promoting recycling and treatment of solid waste, in the light of the current scientific knowledge.
7. To stimulate the development of touristic destinations of health and wellness.
8. To stimulate the creation of strong brands for companies, institutions and health and wellness tourist destinations.
9. To promote the sustainable development of touristic destinations, particularly in the less developed countries.
10. To contribute to improve the quality of life and well-being of the native country populations.
11. To do annually, at the beginning in June, a World Congress on Health and Wellness Tourism, rotating every year among the continents and islands.
12. To use as official working languages, Portuguese, Spanish/Castilian and English.
13. To raise funding sources, namely from national and international governmental support, donations, publicity, publications and others.
14. To create a Global Scientific and Advisory Council that will integrate up to five members by geographical area – Africa, Americas, Asia, Europe, Oceania and the Archipelagos. This Council shall have a maximum of 30 members and shall be chaired by an internationally recognised and relevant personality.
15. To establish protocols of cooperation and collaboration with associations, organizations and institutions interested to pursue similar aims.
16. To affiliate the AMTSBE to the World Tourism Organization (WTO) and the World Health Organization (WHO).
The Health and Wellness Tourism shall help tourists and residents of tourist destinations to become healthier. The ultimate goal is the unceasing pursuit of health, well-being, the pleasure and happiness.