South East Asia is known for its warmth, hospitality and the friendly climatic conditions, making it a veritable magnet for general tourism. The inexpensive costs of living and the fact that they have caught up with the western world in terms of medically skilled doctors and state-of-the-art equipment makes it the perfect choice for procedures that would cost the earth in comparison.
The mental state of mind, which dictates that cosmetic and other enhancing surgeries are preferred away from prying eyes of neighbours and friends, only makes the prospect even more attractive.
Other strong supports
The costs are always a great persuader and since Thai Government, taking an active interest in the promotion of the Medical Tourism industry and the accreditation from international organisations guarantees the safety aspect of the procedure. Thailand boasts of the largest private hospital in Asia – the Bumrungrad International Hospital was the first to gain the JCI Accreditation in 2000.
In 2005, a single Bangkok hospital took in 150,000 medical tourists. In 2006, it was projected that the country would earn 36.4 Billion Baht ($1.71 Billion), this went up to 2.5 Million medical tourists, and expected to reach 100B Baht by 2015 ($3.22B).
According to Kasikorn Survey Centre, nearly 60% of tourists to the country were there for medical procedures and 45% of these had one companion, which generated an additional 140,000 Million Baht ($45.5 Million) in 2012. Originating from the UK, The US, the Middle East, Germany, Australia, Japan and Thailand’s co-ASEAN Countries the visitors have doubled from 2008 – 2012, the primary destinations being Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Hua Hin, Koh Samuim Pattaya/Chonburi and Phuket.
One patient who had a coronary artery bypass surgery at Bumrungrad International Hospital claimed the procedure cost him $12,000 (8,200 Euros) as opposed to the $100,000 (68,000 Euros) it would have cost him back home and it would have cost him that home.
If you have to get a medical procedure done, then why not head for a location where you get the best of both worlds. The excellent services of western-trained doctors and surgeons backed up by the equipment, which compares favourably to that available in first world countries. In the process if you can save the shirt off your back, so much the better. It is a win-win situation; you can only come out better than you went in.