The Malaysia Healthcare Travel Council (MHTC) on Thursday celebrated members of the media at its annual Medical Travel Media Awards (MTMA).
The event serves to recognise outstanding reports and articles by journalists, editors, producers, and media organisations for their contributions in promoting Malaysia’s medical travel industry.
MTMA2020 shone a light on the dedication by both local and international media despite the constraints presented by the pandemic, said the council in a statement.
Chief Executive Officer of MHTC Sherene Azli said that this year’s awards celebrate the contribution of the media as frontliners in their own right.
“The media are a vital source of information and have never ceased to serve the public by educating and keeping us informed during these times of crisis,” she said.
She added: “Through all these, they have even continued to be advocates for Malaysia Healthcare as a platform to showcase our achievements in the global medical travel landscape. We are truly grateful for their unwavering support.”
Commenting on the success of MTMA2020, Sherene said the secretariat had received up to 400 submissions from 11 countries in addition to Malaysia, such as Indonesia, Brunei, Cambodia, Bangladesh, South Korea, China, Vietnam, India, the UK, Croatia, and Tunisia.
The number of submissions marked an increase of 60 per cent from last year.
Furthermore, Suhaimi Sulaiman, a well-known Malaysian media personality with over 30 years of experience as a producer, broadcast journalist, anchor-man, and content strategist, led the team of seven judges.
“This year, the judging process was quite a tedious one, not only because of the increase in the number of submissions. Due to the excellent quality of the submissions themselves, we were left in a tough spot deciding the winners,” said Suhaimi.
Among those on the judging panel were The Straits Times’ Malaysian Bureau Chief, Shannon Teoh; Head of Television at ABU Programming Department, Hanizah Hamizah; Professor in Public Relations of Universiti Teknologi MARA, Shah Alam (UiTM), Prof. Dr. Kiranjit Kaur; Senior Lecturer in Persuasive Communication, Universiti Sains Malaysia, Dr. Izzal Asnira Zolkepli; Senior Editor of Convergence, Commercial and Multimedia, The New Straits Times Press (NSTP), Salina Ahmad; Editor of The Yum List, Monica Tindall, and The Expat Group’s Group Editor, Chad Merchant.
Nine winners were crowned at this year’s MTMA2020 in five categories for both local and international media. They are;
Best Print Report of the Year (Malaysia) – Kong Lee Lian, UNRESERVED Magazine (Cash prize: RM8k and trophy)
Best Print Report of the Year (International) – Jannatul Islam, Daily Sun, Bangladesh (Cash prize: RM8k and trophy)
Best Online Report of the Year (Malaysia) – Christina Chin and Yuen Meikeng, The Star (Cash prize: RM8k and trophy)
Best Online Report of the Year (International) – Neang Sopheap, The Phnom Penh Post, Cambodia (Cash prize: RM8k and trophy)
Best Broadcast Feature of the Year (Malaysia) – Shafizan Johari, Astro Awani (Cash prize: RM8k and trophy)
Medical Travel Journalist of the Year (Malaysia) – Ms. Christina Chin and Ms. Yuen Meikeng, The Star (Cash prize: RM8k and trophy)
Medical Travel Journalist of the Year (International) – Paul Bradbury, Total Croatia News, Croatia (Cash prize: RM8k and trophy)
Medical Travel Editorial Team of the Year (Malaysia) – BERNAMA (Cash prize: RM10k and trophy)
Medical Travel Editorial Team of the Year (International) – The Bruneian, Brunei (Cash prize: RM10k and trophy)
One of the main criteria in making headway to winning the titles was the shareability/reach of the articles on social media – a key tool in promotional activities.
The winners were also judged on the research quality of their reports, their chosen approach in presentation and technique, creativity, the headline, as well as the content of the report.
Sherene also extended her appreciation to MTMA2020 sponsors, ParkCity Medical Centre, Sunway Medical Centre, Mahkota Medical Centre, Majestic Hotel Kuala Lumpur, and SM Advertising, for stepping up to the role to recognise the contributions of media to the current landscape.
In 2019, Malaysia Healthcare hosted nearly 1.3 million healthcare travellers, reaping over RM1.7 billion in hospital receipts, which contributed a total economic impact of RM7 billion. – Analisa Amu
The Bruneian | BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN