Return from Turkey: Turkey, at the crossing point between East and West, has been developed as an excellent destination for healthcare travel as together with continuous quality improvements, enhancement and extension are the keys to this expedition transition.
A total of 2,000 healthcare institutions among these state-of-art hospitals and 61 of them are accredited by Joint Commission International (JCI). This constitutes over 21 per cent of the total accredited hospitals by JCI in 58 countries across the world.
Health Tourism Development Council Association in patronizing of Ministry of Economy and Ministry of Denizli Governorship organized a five-day conference titled ‘2nd International Thermal Healthcare Travel Summit’ at Pamukkale University Congress and Culture Center of Denizli in Turkey from September 20.
The summit was organized with a view to promoting healthcare travel and tourism in Turkey with its healthcare market, which has been going through comprehensive restructuring. Over 250 delegates from 52 countries of the world took part in the summit.
State led health system reforms assisted by an influx of private investment backed with Turkey’s unique cultural and geographical parameters, the local health services landscape is on its way to become the next ‘center of attraction’ for the global medical tourism market.
Turkish JCI accredited hospitals offer a full range of treatments through a network of locations employing approximately 150,000 healthcare professionals where over 15,000 of them are physicians.
Addressing the function, founding chairman of Turkish Healthcare Tourism Development Council Emin Cakmak said, “Globalization was evident in healthcare long before it became a mainstream paradigm for the business world. For decades, patients from around the world have been travelling to various international destinations to find the best possible treatment.”
Mr Emin also observed: “Yet the increasing cost of treatment in developed nations has spurred a new demand, quality treatment at low cost with an added taste of tourism. The high cost of healthcare in the developed world is seen as a major problem for individuals, employers, employee funds, insurance systems and governments. This has shaped the medical tourism industry in the last decades.”
He said, “At the crossroads between East and West, Turkey is on its way to becoming the next center of attraction for the global medical tourism market. Turkey has been going through a comprehensive healthcare restructuring, scaling up its healthcare services and escalating quality improvements to ensure a swift transition.”
In 2016, Turkey hosted over 750,000 international patients from 144 countries and contributed with a direct income of over 5.8 billion USD to the Turkish economy.
Mr. Emin said, “With 61 JCI accredited hospitals and organizations, Turkey’s private medical infrastructure now becomes one of the leading healthcare destinations in the world.”
“The medical tourism industry grossed USD 450 billion worldwide in 2016 and estimates that the market will expand to USD 500 billion by 2000. The majority are patients from the US, CIS, GCC and EU. Although there is limited research covering the trend, it is estimated that two million Americans traveled abroad for treatment in 2016,” he mentioned in his message in the conference.
He said, “With successful treatments, competitive price levels and a unique geographic location, Turkey is on its way to becoming a preferred health partner for insurance companies, assistance, companies, self-run and the government health funds.”
Turkey is among the top three destinations in the world for medical tourism and it is the first preferred destination for Europeans for medical tourism, panel speakers claimed in the summit.
Apart from this, Turkey has invested over 30 billion USD in building new hospitals and technology in the last 10 years.