Wellness and medical tourism – a growing sector in Croatia

Published on : Thursday, November 21, 2019

“Wellness Cruise” in the Adriatic Sea where affluent, health-conscious clients have access to a personal doctor, nutritionist, sports coach and yoga teacher is a growing segment now.

 

Marin Bosotina, who describes himself as an anti-ageing expert, wants to tap into this growing medical tourism business that Croatia sees as holding great potential. The sector currently accounts for 15-20% of the country’s gross domestic product.

 

The growth in demand for medical and health tourism services in Croatia is largely driven by long waiting times in public healthcare and high costs of private care in developed countries like Britain and Italy, as well as general trend of ageing populations.

 

The global medical tourism market is projected to grow 21.4% a year till 2023.

 

Around 10% of tourists to Croatia come for healthcare treatments. On average they spend almost four times more in the country compared to other tourists, with almost 300 Euros ($332.01) per day.

 

“We see the health tourism as our key product for strengthening our offer and income before and after the packed summer season as health tourists spend more than the summer holiday-makers,” said Slavija Jacan Obratov from the Croatian state tourism board HTZ.

 

Croatia’s neighbours Hungary and Slovenia see medical tourism as a potentially fast growing sector. Hungary has emerged as one of the most popular places in Europe for dental tourism, while Slovenia is focusing on wellness.

 

Obratov said that many tourists coming for healthcare are from nearby countries like Italy, Slovenia, Austria or Germany as well as distant countries like Britain.

 

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