Published on : Friday, October 20, 2017
According to a research published this year by PwC consultancy medical tourism has been growing by 12-15 per cent annually in central and Eastern Europe. Cheaper dentistry and cosmetic surgery costs has lured visitors from across the world.
Gdansk, Poland’s biggest city had earlier attracted many foreign tourists for being a historic centre with romantic riverbank and sandy beaches in nearby villages. But now the dental clinics has been a major attraction.
Anna Sarzynska, owner of Anna Dental Clinic in the centre of Gdansk said that ten years back they were the only one who targeted international patients there but now the market had spread to almost all the clinic offering services to foreigners.
She further added that 80 percent of the clients are from abroad mainly from Scandinavia but also from UK and Ireland, she had further made provisions to organsie stays for patients that would include hotel bookings and sightseeing.
Hungary has the reputation of specializing in dental services for foreigner which Czech Republic has a market for cataract surgey and Poland is known for its plastic surgeons as well as dentists.
Szymon Piatkowski, the head of CEE healthcare advisory at PwC the market has potential but needs further development , there is room for the development of more complex, sophisticated surgeries.
Patients from different part of central Europe come from the west and the east, visitors from Germany, the UK and the Nordic countries opt for one-day, cosmetic treatments or stays in medical spas that offer rates which are two to three times lower than their home countries.
Artur Gosk, the head of the Polish Association of Medical Tourism said that there were no barriers for medical tourism development in the private Polish clinics, he boasted of having specialists and know-how that offer treatment at par with other European countries.
It was also noted at the same time that the public services in the hospital were not influenced by the growing medical tourism.
The spending on the healthcare in Poland was 6.4 per cent in GDP in 2016 as per the OECD data and was considered as one of the lowest levels in the EU.