Wednesday, April 18, 2007

How many medical tourists are there?

There has always been speculation about the true number of medical tourists travelling from the UK for treatment abroad.

We've just completed the first ever survey of medical tourism providers, and have come up with some interesting data on the medical tourism market. The Treatment Abroad Medical Tourism Survey 2007 (www.treatmentabroad.net), reveals that over 50,000 people travelled abroad for treatment last year, and spent £161 million on medical tourism. The number of medical tourists increased by 25% over the 12 months and will continue to grow over the next 6-12 months.

Dentistry is the most popular service with dental treatments such as crowns, dental implants, bridges and veneers leading the way. Over 20,000 Brits travel abroad for their teeth, spending around £2,500 each, with an estimated market value of over £50 million per annum.

Cosmetic surgery is a close second with around 14,500 patients travelling outside the UK. Breast augmentation, tummy tuck, liposuction and facelift are popular choices; patients spend around £3,500 each, creating an estimated market size of £50 million.

The most common types of elective surgery for patients travelling abroad are hip replacement, knee replacement, laser eye surgery and cataract removal, with some 10,000 patients spending £37 million in 2007.

8 comments:

Raphael Encaouoa said...

Thanks for posting these very intersting figures. Yet, I wonder what is the figure if we include very light medical procedures such as botox or tatoo removal?

I have the impression that this figure of 50000 for the UK is stable (it is quite the same number for 2005 and 2006 according to reports) with the same kind of outbreak (20000 for dentistry). I still have in mind that you put forward a 25% augmentation so the figure that you have reported must be way more accurate than other approximations. What have been the real triggers that spurred such a growth. is it due to better awareness, positive word of mouth...?

Professor Steve Green of Trent said...

"SEMINAR ON MEDICAL TOURISM/TRAVEL AND INTERNATIONAL HOSPITAL ACCREDITATION – A VIEW FROM THE UNITED KINGDOM AND HONG KONG": 14th July 2007 at Singapore Management University.

How does one know if the hospitals and healthcare facilities one is visiting as a medical tourist are of an adequate standard ? For US-based customers, JCI accreditation helps here, but of course only a minority of US citizens possess a passport and hence the UK and Europe offers probably just as great, if not greater, potential for medical tourism growth than North America.

Trent Hospital Accreditation, the British/European Healthcare Accreditation group that has both been successfully surveying and accrediting Hong Kong’s private hospitals for more than 10 years, are running a full-day seminar at Singapore Management University for hospitals and health professionals interested in looking towards a UK/European-focussed accreditation scheme.

The date of the seminar will be SATURDAY 14TH JULY 2007. Attendance at the seminar is free.

The day will consist both of lectures and of interactive workshops.

The subjects to be discussed on the day will include Medical Travel/Medical Tourism (Malaysia is of course a leading centre in this area of clinical activity), issues around hospital and primary care surveying accreditation, the international accreditation experience of the Hong Kong private hospitals, working with international accreditors to develop locally-appropriate sets of standards, and dual international accreditation issues.

Hospital accreditation involves, of course, not only clinical care standards of course, but also nursing, management and administration, medical, laboratories, governance and audit, risk management, education and training, and a host of other issues. If a hospital is successful in obtaining accreditation (especially up to international standards) and keeping it, this also helps confer credibility on a hospital and is a public declaration that a particular hospital has high standards. It helps to maintain and grow public confidence in those hospitals.

At the seminar, we are extremely privileged that the President of the International Medical Travel Association has kindly agreed to lecture on the subject of “The International Medical Travel Association”.

Other speakers in Singapore will come from Hong Kong and from the United Kingdom.

The Chairman for the Seminar is from a Hong Kong hospital that has been successful in obtaining dual international accreditation, from both Trent and the American JCI group.

We anticipate that colleagues from Macau, Brunei, and hopefully Thailand, will be joining colleagues from Singapore for the day.

There will be 60 places at the seminar, available on a first come first served basis. If anyone from the healthcare and associated medical tourism-related industries is interested, the 14th July 2007 should go into your diary. At this early stage emailed expressions of interest would be very welcome.

- Ms Liz Brownhill, Senior Manager, Trent

- Professor Stephen T. Green MD, BSc, FRCP(Lond & Glas), MFPH(UK), FFTM(RCPSGlas), DTM&H (GMC No: 2605610). Lead Surveyor, Trent

- Professor Tin Chiu Li PhD, MD, FRCOG, FRCP(Glas) (GMC No: 2669544). Lead Surveyor, Trent

Binks said...

Good & well documented statistics!

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The dentist's website are as follows:

http://myrlepeters.bravehost.com

http://myrlepeters.bravehost.com

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pangaeamed said...

Very interesting statistics. Did you guys do any research on Canada and the United States?

glasgow cosmetic dentist said...

No need to look over the number of medical tourists is treatments provided are cheap, fast, latest and advanced.

alexander said...

I really appreciate you for all the valuable information that you are providing us through your blog.

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