Drive to attract more Chinese medical tourists to Los Angeles

Updated: 2014-11-22 10:38

By Xu Jingxi(China Daily)

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Los Angeles' mayor Eric Garcetti has signed a memorandum of understanding in Guangzhou to attract more Chinese medical tourists to the western United States.

Nine Chinese and US signatories have agreed to promote medical tourism from China to the city. They are China Southern Airlines; the city of Los Angeles; the Los Angeles Tourism and Convention Board; the Los Angeles Economic Development Corporation; Cedar Sinai Medical Center; City of Hope Hospital; Children's Hospital Los Angeles; UCLA; and USC.

Garcetti began his 12-day visit to China, South Korea and Japan by pushing to increase tourism and investment in Los Angeles.

"We want to encourage more people to come from here (Guangzhou) to our city, not just as tourists to go to places like Disneyland. We have the finest hospitals in the world and we want to promote health travel, which can help with the health sector here in China," said Garcetti during his meeting with Guangzhou's mayor Chen Jianhua in the southern Chinese metropolis on Nov 16.

A website dedicated to the medical initiative,, has been set up to provide more information.

Together with China Southern Airlines, which operates a direct flight from Guangzhou to Los Angeles daily, the partners will work on the identification, evaluation, operation and recovery of medical tourist patients.

According to the Los Angeles mayor's office, trade last year between Los Angeles and China was valued at $164.38 billion; with Japan at $43.5 billion; and with South Korea at $23.5 billion. Some 570,000 Chinese tourists visited Los Angeles and spent $655 million.