Published on : Thursday, August 28, 2014
Turkish hospitality and friendliness is well deserved, and now combined with easily accessible high quality medical treatment at economical prices, Turkey is a rising star on the global medical tourism scene.
In terms of tourist numbers Turkey is the world’s sixth top destination.
According to the World Tourism Organization out of about 35 million tourists who visited Turkey last year, around 188,095 came for surgical procedures from hair transplants, liposuction to cancer
and orthopedic treatment.
The number of medical tourists who visited Turkey in the first six months of 2014 totaled 162,445 with revenues reaching $328 million.
The Turkish Statistical Institute showed tourism income in Turkey increased 7.9 percent in the second quarter of 2014, compared to the same quarter of last year, to reach $9 billion.
Foreign visitors accounted for 84.5 percent of this income, while Turkish citizens living abroad accounted for the rest.
Fatih Ozturk, the Project Manager of VisitandCare.com said currently, over 1000 patients travel to Turkey every year to take advantage of the medical services.
VisitandCare.com is a patient and doctor matching service which helps visitors from the Middle East and Europe and has four global offices in the U.S., Mexico, Tunisia and Turkey.
He said of the clients, “They are mostly from western European, countries like the UK, Germany and the Netherlands, as well as from Libya and United Arab Emirates.”
Private equity investors favor Turkey’s fast-growing service industries, including healthcare, retail and education, because of a near tripling of the nominal per capita gross domestic product over the past decade and a young population of 76.5 million.
Foreign institutions including Malaysian sovereign fund Khazanah Nasional, Qatar’s First Investment Bank, Argus Capital Partners and the World Bank’s International Finance Corp (IFC) have put money into the Turkish healthcare sector.
The country is building medical facilities with public-private partnerships where the state will rent city hospitals built and run by the private sector for 25 years.
Turkey’s health ministry said the country has great advantages in terms of health tourism with a very convenient geographical location.