Saturday, July 27, 2013

Thailand: Improving medical travel and avoiding complacency

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Thailand has been successful in attracting tourists from all over the world. BBC confirmed this in its 2012 report citing 2010 travel figures: more than 89% of medical travelers went to Thailand, India, and Singapore that year, with Bangkok and Singapore being the main destinations.

The International Medical Travel Journal also presented figures lending evidence to Thailand’s power as a tourist attraction, particularly among Russians and Eastern Europeans. The number of Russians travelling to the Southeast Asian emerging economy had increased by 24% to 1.31 million in 2012.

This growth is not surprising, since Thailand has earned a reputation for gracious and attentive medical service, and most importantly, affordable medical care. However, the medical travel industry is apprehensive that low prices and a steady increase in demand could be unprofitable in the long run. Complacency is at the root of this worry, as voiced by the Tourism Authority of Thailand. Thailand’s dominance in medical tourism may take the focus away from quality operational standards and fall into a volatile reliance on numbers to fuel profit.

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The tourism body then stated its intention to counter this dangerous tendency by taking on new advances in technology for cosmetic, fertility, anti-aging, and cell treatments targeting markets from Australia, Asia, Russia, and the USA.

Steven Lash, CEO of Satori World Medical, a San Diego-based medical travel company released a statement assuring medical tourists of the quality of medical services in Bangkok:

“The hospitals in Bangkok are some of the highest quality in the world, meeting or exceeding US standards.”

He added that all of the patients he and his team have sent to Bangkok have nothing but positive feedback on procedures and medical experience. 

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This Facebook page provides more information on Steven Lash’s work in helping Americans get affordable, safe and quality treatment in Thailand and other countries through Satori World Medical.

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