He said the health tourism industry was identified as one of the vital elements to support Malaysia's economic growth but the private sector's lack of involvement was regrettable since that sector was the one which would gain more benefits.
"Basically, when the government decided to get involved in the field of health tourism, it was seen as a component of the Economic Transformation Plan (ETP), as an important economy stimulant.
"But we could only act as the facilitator, and the industry should be driven by the private sector," he said while delivering a speech during the CEO Summit 2014, organised by the Malaysia Healthcare Travel Council (MHTC) here Tuesday.
Dr Subramaniam said Malaysia had every necessary element to spur the private sector, and to the extent of becoming leader in the region, including good health scheme, professional doctors and good hospitals.
However, he said, there was evidence that while private hospital managers were willing to get involved, they did not get the required cooperation from the respective doctors.
"There's clear evidence in the dialogue (CEO Summit 2014), some of the hospital managers said they wanted to be involved...(but) the individual doctors have been reluctant.
"Probably, the doctors already have enough local patients keeping them busy and do not see the value of treating foreigners.
"The desire must come from them, then only we (government) can support," he said, adding that the government had already planned to relook MHTC's structure to allow a greater role from the private sector.
During the speech, Dr Subramaniam also acknowledged that between 2010 and 2013, Malaysia had recorded a double digit in terms of the number of healthcare travellers and revenue generated.
He said, in 2010 alone, data had shown that the number of healthcare travellers recorded was 393,000 people, and the figure rose to 770,000 in 2013, indicating an impressive growth of 96 per cent over three years.
"The top 10 countries for healthcare travellers last year were Indonesia, India, Japan, China, Libya, the United Kingdom, Australia, USA, Bangladesh and the Philippines.
"In terms of revenue generated, we had garnered RM379 million in 2010, and this subsequently, rose by an encouraging 82 per cent within three years, with a RM690 million revenue.
"This is testament to the growing reputation of Malaysia's excellent standards in healthcare quality in this region," he said.