WEST PALM BEACH, Florida — The Global Healthcare Accreditation (GHA) Program has announced its new accreditation programs for hotels seeking to enhance guest experiences and safety protocols for wellness and/or medical travelers.
GHA has developed two accreditation programs: WellHotel for Wellbeing and WellHotel for Medical Travel. Both programs focus on validating the programs hotels provide for these growing niche markets, and the accreditation seal builds trusts and offers a competitive edge to those hotels that achieve accredited status.
According to Karen Timmons, GHA’s CEO, “This year has provided revitalized interest from hotels to reinvent niche offerings to meet the demand of discerning travelers looking to resume travel for wellbeing and medical travel, so we are delighted to announce the official launching of the GHA Wellhotel Accreditation Program today. GHA WellHotel is committed to providing hotels with a comprehensive set of best practices to assist in building trust and confidence on the part of guests seeking a medical or wellness destination. The seal achieved for hotels through accreditation supports wellness and medical travelers looking for a safe, high-quality wellness destination while offering an excellent guest experience. GHA is the only accrediting body focused entirely on medical and wellness travel, and its goal is to share professional norms and best practices for stakeholders in these industries.”
The GHA Wellhotel Accreditation Program offers these key highlights:
- Building trust, confidence, and comfort for wellness tourists or medical travel guests through a third-party review and trusted GHA WellHotel seal.
- Attraction by guests in new niche markets to increase room bookings and length of stay.
- Validation of the hotel’s cleanliness and safety and instilling peace-of-mind that proper cleaning and sanitation is a hotel priority.
- Validation that safety protocols are in use for guests and staff.
- Attraction for bookings through wellness travel agents and medical travel facilitators.
- Providing assurance to medical travel and wellness guests that the hotel identifies and supports the cultural, dietary, religious, handicapped access, and other unique needs of the guests/patients.
- Increase in guest satisfaction for wellness tourists and medical travel guests.
- Wellbeing and medical travel packages provide an opportunity for organizations to increase TRevPAR.
The application and accreditation process are completed conveniently online and include access to the accreditation handbook and online training. Hotels must meet certain foundational requirements to be eligible for accreditation and submit required documentation that is reviewed by the GHA WellHotel Compliance Team to render the accreditation decision. Hotels serving both wellness and medical travel guests have the option of undergoing both accreditations simultaneously.
The wellness and medical travel industries have been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, but with mass vaccination programs and the lifting of travel restrictions, new opportunities emerge for the hotel industry to target the overall wellbeing of travelers seeking safe destinations for their leisure or business trip. Those properties that have the proper programs and protocols in place to mitigate risk and enhance patient and guest safety will be the top choice.