Turkey : The European hub of medical tourism
Medical tourism is a growing trend in medicine and health care.
Patients travel from one country to another to access medical services and procedures ranging from dental care hair transplants to eye surgery and IVF. Turkey is at the centre of this thriving new sector.
Medical tourism: A growth industry
In the past, medical tourism has been chiefly defined as when people from less-developed nations travel abroad for treatments they need and which are not yet available in their own country. But now the trend is changing, to a situation where people from more economically developed countries seek high quality but less expensive medical treatments abroad - and often with shorter or no waiting times.
Globally, the health tourism market looks set to increase to $180 billion by 2026. The reasons for this growth include:
• Treatment is more affordable without any sacrifice of quality
• Shorter or even no waiting times for elective procedures
• Receiving treatment away from home allows for more discretion and can avoid having to explain to friends and family
• People living abroad may return to their home country for the treatment they require
Why is Turkey a hub for medical tourism?
Turkey is one of the most popular countries today for health tourism. More than 700,000 people a year visit the country to take advantage of the excellent healthcare and medical services. In fact, more than a third of the people receiving treatment in Turkey have opted to travel from another country for the treatment they have selected.
The reasons for Turkey's success in the medical tourism sector are:
• Turkey’s healthcare system is affordable and accessible.
• The country has a large number of US-accredited medical establishments
• Most Turkish doctors complete their training in North America and Europe before practising in Turkey.
• Turkey is the crossroads between the East and the West and offers excellent transport links wherever you are travelling from. And thanks to its strategic location, Turkey has been a commercial, political and cultural centre for centuries.
• Istanbul Airport is one of the world's busiest, offering 300 direct flights and accommodating over 200m passengers per annum.
Surgical procedures are more affordable in Turkey
The figures speak for themselves: surgical and medical procedures can be around 90% less expensive in Turkey than in many countries. Almost 70% of medical tourists worldwide come to Turkey for medical, dental and surgical procedures in state-of-the-art private clinical settings. Cosmetic surgery such as breast implants, tummy tucks and hair transplants in Turkey is also 70 % cheaper than in the rest of Europe. So you pay less while taking advantage of top quality treatments.
In addition, Turkish Airlines offer discounts for medical tourists. So when you do the maths of the costs of your treatment, travel and hotel accommodation, the total is still less than if you opted to have the same procedure in another western country. And you have the benefit of taking a holiday in Turkey at the same time!
A wide range of treatments
Some countries tend to specialise in specific treatments, but Turkey offers a comprehensive choice of medical and surgical procedures, including cancer treatments, dentistry, affordable IVF, and hair transplants. Turkey is also a popular destination for mental health and help in quitting smoking.
Top surgeons and first-class hospitals
One of the secrets of the success of Turkey's medical sector is that the government invests in upgrading and developing healthcare. Hence, the country's facilities and health professionals are comparable with the best in the world. A PPP (private-public-partnership) model has been instrumental in improving the healthcare infrastructure. High-quality private clinics also invest in improving and developing their facilities. And finally, as we mentioned above, internationally qualified, experienced surgeons choose to practise in Turkey, so the standard of care is exceptionally high.
Short waiting times
Turkey's healthcare sector is well aware of the value brought by their foreign clients, so they pay attention to meeting the requirements of patients tran]velling from other countries. As a result, you can schedule your chosen procedure in as little as two weeks, while in the UK, it is common to wait years for the same treatment.
Turkey : A unique blend of Arab, Oriental and European cultures
If you are considering medical tourism, the beautiful country of Turkey is an excellent option. As well as its rich history, pleasant climate and unique blend of Arab, Oriental and European cultures, Turkey offers top-quality, readily available medical treatments.
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