The global medical tourism market size was valued at USD 4.0 billion in 2021 and is expected to expand at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 32.51% from 2022 to 2030. Cost savings and additional benefits to visitors such as improved healthcare, cutting-edge technologies, breakthrough medicines, sophisticated devices, superior hospitality, and individualized care are some of the market's major drivers.
During the forecast period, the market is projected to advance at a breakneck pace. The high cost of health services in home countries is the primary factor propelling the market growth. Additionally, the industry is being driven by rising demand for procedures that are not covered by insurance, such as gender reassignment surgeries, reproductive therapy, dental reconstruction, and aesthetic surgery.
In developing countries such as Thailand and Malaysia, a high-quality treatment can be availed at a lower cost, than in developed countries. Even though the cost of treatments in developing countries is minimal, the quality of the procedure is not compromised due to the availability of resources at relatively lower costs. This factor results in the influx of people to avail of health services in these countries.
For instance, angioplasty procedure costs around USD 55,000 to USD 57,000 for an individual in the U.S., compared to around USD 2,500 to USD 3,500 in Malaysia. People travel from the U.S. and Europe to Thailand, Singapore, India, and Malaysia for medical treatments, saving about 55% to 70% of their treatment expenses.
In addition, emerging countries are known to have renowned surgeons, which is attracting millions of patients per year for various treatments. The prices of medical treatments in Malaysia are 30% to 40% lower than in countries such as the U.S., UK, and other European economies. A large population of foreigners seeks surgeries such as facial aesthetics procedures, dental implants, breast implants, facelifts, and liposuction in these countries. Improvements in healthcare infrastructure and the availability of high-quality healthcare services at affordable prices will drive the global market growth.
Furthermore, delaying necessary treatments might worsen pre-existing conditions, and the risks associated with delaying various surgeries can lead to other complications. For instance, delaying hip replacement surgery can lead to deterioration of the hip joint, limited mobility, and an increase in pain. In addition, the possibility of undergoing minimally invasive surgery, such as hip resurfacing, would no longer be an option for the patient.
Similarly, delaying a root canal treatment can lead to the destruction of the tooth, resulting in tooth loss. For instance, in developed countries like the UK and Canada, there is at least a 4-week wait between the time a patient makes an appointment and the time he/she can see the physician. Canada has the highest percentage of patients (36%) who have to wait 6 days or more for an appointment with a doctor. In the UK, waiting lists for non-essential surgeries, such as knee reconstructions, are up to 18 months, while in Australia and Canada, they can take up to 2 years.
COVID-19 Medical Tourism Market Impact: 86.2 % decrease from 2019 to 2020
Post COVID Outlook
The COVID-19 pandemic had a massive impact on the market, especially in the first half of 2020. The primary reasons for this drop were the imposition of travel restrictions and the global suspension of elective procedures.
The market is not expected to return to the pre-pandemic level till 2024. This is mainly due to foreigners avoiding travelling and the majority of countries closing their borders in 2021 as well.
The outbreak of COVID-19 has sparked uncertainty in countries throughout the world. For a country that is economically dependent on tourism, the impact of COVID-19 in general and travel restrictions, in particular, has been severe.
The opening of borders in 2022 and vaccination drives may positively impact the market. For instance, the Malaysian government is reviving the industry with a few measures. Malaysia began receiving medical tourists from six nations in July 2021, including Japan, Australia, and Singapore.
According to the Thailand Ministry of Tourism and Sports, overall tourist arrivals fell to 6.7 million in 2020, down from 39.9 million in 2019, an 83.2% fall. Similarly, as per the Malaysia Tourism Promotion Board (MTPB), the number of tourists declined by 83.4% in 2020 to 4.33 million.
In the UK, about 10 million patients are currently waiting for surgery, up from 4 million before the outbreak. According to the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, the U.S. may face an accumulated backlog of over a million total spine and joint surgery cases by mid-2022, with the country needing up to 16 months to clear the backlog. Backlogs of treatments and excessive wait times will likely fuel the medical tourism market in the coming years.
Medical tourism has offered a method for people who cannot afford to wait for treatment in their native country, to avoid long queues by traveling overseas for treatment. Thus, to save time and avoid the aggravation of their medical issues, many patients rely on medical tourism and travel overseas to countries that offer procedures immediately. Furthermore, governments of many countries are focusing on promoting health and wellness tourism in their countries through various strategies. Strong government support is thus anticipated to favor market growth.
Turkey was one of the dominating markets with a share of 26.1% in 2021. This can be attributed to a higher influx of health tourists in the country when compared to other nations. As per the Turkish Statistical Institute, a total of 642,444 inbound medical tourists visited Turkey in 2021, an increase of 66% from 2020. Thailand, Costa Rica, India, Malaysia, Mexico, Brazil, Singapore, Turkey, Colombia, South Korea, Taiwan, Czech Republic, Spain, Australia, China, and Indonesia have been covered in the report, based on their emergence as popular destinations for medical tourism.
Thailand is one of the popular destinations for medical tourism. Its popularity as a tourist destination is augmenting its market growth. The growing number of private institutions, improvements to the overall healthcare infrastructure, and lower treatment prices all contribute to the country’s growth in medical tourism.
Thailand currently has over 450 private hospitals, a figure that is likely to increase substantially in the coming years. The country was ranked 18th in the 2016 Medical Tourism Index. It was ranked 13th on the same index for the quality of facilities and services supplied, owing to its well-developed healthcare infrastructure and a growing population of medical experts.
Some of the factors contributing to Thailand’s growth are the presence of a highly developed tourism sector, an increase in the number of private healthcare providers, and reasonable treatment costs. Furthermore, improved quality of personal care and adoption of the latest treatment technologies are responsible for the growing medical tourism in the country. It has more than 1,000 hospitals and is home to Asia's largest private hospital. Bumrungrad International Hospital is Asia's first hospital to be accredited by the Joint Commission International and to be certified ISO 9001.
Medical tourism generates significant revenue for developing economies, allowing them to continue expanding their healthcare businesses. This has resulted in increased government engagement and the promotion of medical tourism. For example, medical tourists to Malaysia are primarily from Indonesia, the United Kingdom, Middle Eastern countries, China, India, Japan, Australia, and New Zealand.
Malaysia's Ministry of Health is providing all required assistance for the development of necessary infrastructure and the improvement of existing hospitals. The procedure for obtaining a visa to visit Malaysia has been streamlined, making it far easier for patients to obtain the appropriate papers to enter the country and receive necessary treatment.
Thailand is mostly preferred for cosmetic and bariatric surgeries. Some of the common procedures performed in Thailand include breast augmentation, laser tattoo removal, liposuction, Botox, hair transplant, and CoolSculpting. In Thailand, cosmetic surgeries are the most preferred type of treatment.
On the other hand, procedures such as knee replacement, hip replacement, and gastric bypass are more affordable in India, as compared to some of the developed nations including the U.S. and the UK. Costa Rica is preferred by tourists for dental procedures.
Dental and cosmetic treatments are the most preferred types of treatment in Malaysia. Heart diseases, orthopedics, infertility, health checkups, dental, and cancer are common factors for which inbound tourists visit Indonesia. The country is aiming to target niche areas, such as dentistry, health checkups, and cosmetic surgery, especially breast augmentation & rhinoplasty. Health checkups and dental treatments accounted for the major portion of inbound procedures in Indonesia.
Medical Tourism Market Report Scope
Market size value in 2022
USD 10.3 billion
Revenue forecast in 2030
USD 97.9 billion
CAGR of 32.51% from 2022 to 2030
Base year for estimation
2016 - 2020
2022 - 2030
Revenue in USD million and CAGR from 2022 to 2030
Revenue forecast, company ranking, competitive landscape, growth factors, and trends
Treatment Type, Service Provider, Country
Thailand; India; Costa Rica; Mexico; Malaysia; Singapore; Brazil; Colombia; Turkey; Taiwan; South Korea; Spain; Czech Republic; China; Australia; Indonesia
Free report customization (equivalent up to 8 analysts working days) with purchase. Addition or alteration to country, regional & segment scope.
Pricing and purchase options
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Segments Covered in the Report
This report forecasts revenue growth at the country level and provides an analysis of the latest industry trends in each of the sub-segments from 2016 to 2030. For the purpose of this study, Grand View Research has segmented the global medical tourism market report based on country:
Treatment Type Outlook(Revenue, USD Million, 2016 - 2030)
Service Provider Outlook(Revenue, USD Million, 2016 - 2030)
Country Outlook(Revenue, USD Million, 2016 - 2030)
Frequently Asked Questions About This Report
How big is the medical tourism market?
b. The global medical tourism market size was estimated at USD 4.0 billion in 2021 and is expected to reach USD 10.3 billion in 2022.
What is the medical tourism market growth?
b. The global medical tourism market is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 32.51% from 2022 to 2030 to reach USD 97.9 billion by 20230.
Which segment accounted for the largest medical tourism market share?
b. Turkey dominated the medical tourism market with a share of 26.1% in 2021. This is attributable to high influx of medical tourists in 2021, when compared to other countries.
Who are the key players in medical tourism market?
b. Some key players operating in the medical tourism market are Bumrungrad International Hospital, Samitivej Hospitals, and Bangkok Hospital Group, Apollo Hospitals Enterprise Ltd., and Fortis Hospitals.
What are the factors driving the medical tourism market?
b. Key factors that are driving the medical tourism market growth include significant cost-saving and availability of additional benefits including better healthcare, latest technologies, innovative medicines, modern devices, better hospitality, and personalized care.