Middle East

Dubai’s medical tourism picks up again

dubai tourism

Dubai’s medical tourism sector is bouncing back from the effects of Covid-19, with a recent resurgence in numbers of visitors seeking medical treatment as restrictions on travel are gradually lifted.

With more countries than ever out of reach to medical tourists in neighbouring nations, many are looking to Dubai for the level of treatment they require, The National has reported.

“Dubai is quite an attractive prospect given its ease of access for those from neighbouring countries,” said Christian Schumacher, chief executive of King’s College Hospital London, Dubai.

“We are seeing an upturn in the number of visitors from countries with less developed healthcare systems, like Nigeria and others in the African continent. There are also a lot of visitors coming from surrounding GCC nations as well.”

The most recent figures showed there were more than 337,000 medical tourists who visited the emirate in 2018. Last year, Dubai Health Authority said it was on track to welcome 500,000 medical tourists a year by 2021, according to the report by The National.

“People are travelling to be treated for breast cancer and we are seeing an increase in orthopaedic and cardiology patients as well,” Schumacher said. “The reason people are travelling is the quality of care they get in Dubai. It’s safe to say they are not travelling for minor procedures.”

“The government’s commitment and effort to address the impact of the pandemic has put us on the path to recovery rather soon. In fact, the exemplary actions of the government have allowed the UAE to be ranked as one of the safest nations during the pandemic,” he added.