Impact of Service Quality on Foreign Tourists’ Satisfaction of Medical Tourism in Western Province, Sri Lanka
To grow the tourism industry and make a significant contribution to the national economy, Sri Lanka has to focus on promoting new sustainable tourism markets. A fresh approach has been to promote the sustainable tourism market segment is Medical Tourism. According to Sri Lanka Sustainable Tourism Development Project, (2009) has been identified native and unique medical treatments and practices, availability of rare natural herbs and also the traditional background open the doors for attracting medical tourists to the destination. Medical Tourism is regarded as a highly service focused industry, thus, the patients' satisfaction primarily depends on the way they got the medication and other treatments rather than the nature of the Ayurvedic medicines. Service quality is one of the main factors that contributes for the satisfaction of patients. Therefore, the researchers mainly focused on investigating the impact of Service Quality on Foreign Tourists’ Satisfaction of Medical Tourism in Western Province, Sri Lanka. The quantitative research approach was used in data collection using self-administered questionnaires. 130 foreign health tourists who have experienced Ayurveda medical treatments from health resorts in Western province were chosen as the sample, based on non-probabilistic convenience sampling method. As per the results of this study, service quality of health resorts has a significant impact on foreign health tourists’ satisfaction. Responsiveness, Reliability and Empathy significantly enhances the satisfaction of health tourists. Since the scholarly attention given to understand the impact of service quality on tourists’ satisfaction in medical tourism is very low in both the global and local contexts, this research fills the gap in the existing literature. As the managerial implications, service organizations can obtain insights in which aspects they should improve their service to make their customers happy. As per this study is limited to the Western province in Sri Lanka, but it can be extended geographically in future research studies. Further, there are avenues to investigate the impact of other factors such as prices, accessibility, and output quality on health tourists’ satisfaction.
Keywords: Medical Tourism, Service Quality, SERVQUAL model, Tourists’ Satisfaction