Inbound UK medical tourism


It is well documented that thousands of Britons leave the UK every year for dental and cosmetic surgery, with a minority going for medical treatment. But global medical tourism is a two way process: travel into the UK for healthcare has existed for many years, well before medical tourism became a business.In the UK, although numbers are unknown, anecdotal evidence suggests that it is concentrated on hospitals with an international reputation, almost all being in London. Some private and NHS hospitals actively seek out international patients, whether self-funded, insured or paid for by their governments. Others passively accept the business that has come to them for decades. The UK is more expensive than Asia but cheaper than the US or Middle East.

Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children trust is also looking to grow its international business both from Europe and further afield over the next few years. In the UK, HCA International owns six leading London hospitals; The Harley Street Clinic, The Lister Hospital, London Bridge Hospital, The Portland Hospital for Women and Children, The Princess Grace Hospital and The Wellington Hospital. Since the 1970’s many international patients have travelled to London for specialist patient care. The International Patient Centre (IPC) caters to the needs of patients from abroad, across all the hospitals. With offices in Kuwait, United Arab Emirates, Pakistan, Nigeria, Greece, Cyprus, Libya, Egypt, HCA offers an extensive network of access points for the medical tourist.

HCA will also look for expansion in countries where high quality specialised medical services at an affordable price are needed. Other hospitals have already taken opportunities abroad. Moorfields Eye Hospital has a clinic in Dubai; Moorfields Eye Hospital Dubai has seen over 2000 patients since opening in July 2007 in Dubai Healthcare City. Moorfields currently treats a significant number of patients in the UK from the Middle East.



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