Iceland health tourism takes step closer at Asbru

 

Iceland’s business centre Asbru is nearer to developing a medical tourism destination targeting Scandinavian and British medical and dental tourists.

Asbru, on a former NATO airbase next to Iceland’s Keflavik International Airport, will become home to a new international health services centre. A contract has been signed by the Keflavik Airport Development Corporation (Kadeco) and Iceland Health.

Kadeco aims to develop a health village concept where businesses working in health related industries are clustering together to exploit synergies. It is Iceland Health’s goal to increase specialised health services and begin substantial medical tourism in Iceland. Iceland Health’s initial product offering will include joint surgery and obesity surgery, including important post-surgery rehabilitation. Obesity services will include a range of behavioural treatments against obesity.

Iceland Health’s Asbru health centre has a professional advisory council. The council has confirmed members including: Otto Nordhus, chest wall surgeon; Bjarni Sem, heart surgeon and Leif Ryd, orthopaedic surgeon. The council will also include obesity and rehabilitation experts.

The Iceland Health project will catapult Asbru to the position of the premier medical tourism facility in Iceland. Asbru is already home to several innovative companies in the health and wellness sector. The majority of tourists who go to Iceland travel through Keflavik Airport. Icelanders enjoy the longest life expectancy and highest healthy life expectancy in Europe.

The facilities at Ásbrú will include a health and fitness village with an international centre for health and relaxation. A Reykjanes Health Association has been founded to promote Reykjanes in the as a destination for health and relaxation. The goals are to market Iceland as the land of strength, fortitude, beauty and health.

In May 2009, Icelandic entrepreneur Jonina Benediktsdottir opened a 50 room detox health center in Asbru.She is now getting large numbers of Norwegian customers, and has been profiled on Norwegian television. Jónína's connection with Norway began when Norwegians began going to the detox treatments she offers in Poland. Norwegians prefer going to Iceland rather than Poland. Also booked in are health tourists from Sweden, Finland, the Czech Republic and Canada.

After Nato evacuation in 2006, the base was re-invented as a community of entrepreneurs, students and business. Ásbrú has the largest university campus in Iceland, one of the largest business incubators in Iceland, as well as other projects including a green energy research centre.

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