The global market for medical tourism is expanding at an exponential rate. Medical tourism refers to traveling from one place to another for the purpose of getting treatment for a disease or for a medical procedure, as well as for recuperation and well-being.
According to a research report, published by Transparency Market Research (TMR), the global market for medical tourism was US$10.5 bn in 2012. Analysts project this market to rise at a CAGR of 17.90% between 2013 and 2019 and reach an estimated value US$32.5 bn by the end of 2019.
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The biggest beneficiaries of the growing trend of medical tourism are emerging Asian economies with a good supply of medical facilities as well as the availability of skilled professionals at a cheaper rate than developed countries. The presence of attractive visiting sites in abundance adds to the prominence of the medical tourism market in Asia.
Availability of Quality Medical Services Drive Thailand Medical Tourism Market
Malaysia, Singapore, India, Thailand, South Korea, Philippines, Taiwan, and Japan are the most preferred locations globally among tourists traveling due to medical purposes. Thailand, of all, has been leading the worldwide medical tourism market. Along with Singapore and India, the country accounts for almost 90% of the overall medical tourism market in Asia.
More than 2 million individuals travel to Thailand every year for medical treatment. The quality medical and healthcare services, the nation offers, is the key driving factor behind its increasing popularity as a reliable medical tourism destination.
India has also gained a strong foothold in the field of medical tourism. On an average, the country attracts 150 thousand foreign patients every year. Analysts expect the medical tourism market in India to witness steady growth on account of a large pool of patients traveling to the country for complex cardiac procedures.
Malaysia to Welcome 2 million Tourists in 2019
Malaysia is exhibiting exceptional growth in the global medical tourism market. According to Malaysia Healthcare Travel Council (MHTC), in 2014, the country reportedly received a total of 882 thousand foreign patients, while in 2013, 2012, and 2011, the number were 881 thousand, 728 thousand, and 641 thousand respectively.
The statistics clearly shows an upward trend in the Malaysia medical tourism market. Experts believe this country is likely to maintain this trend in the nearing future. Almost 2 million foreigners are expected to get treated in Malaysia in 2019.
On the other hand, Singapore is likely to lose medical tourists to its neighbors. The country is finding it hard to maintain its position as a popular medical tourism hub. The challenges are likely to only intensify in future, owing to the infrastructural enhancement of the healthcare sector in its neighboring nations.
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Min-Sheng General Hospital, Fortis Healthcare Ltd., KPJ Healthcare Berhad, Samitivej Sukhumvit, Raffles Medical Group, Bangkok Hospital Medical Center, Apollo Hospitals Enterprise Ltd., Bumrungrad International Hospital, Asian Heart Institute, and Prince Court Medical Center are the key organizations operating in the global market for medical tourism.