Jordan's medical tourism debts rise while tourist numbers fall

 

Unpaid debts owed to 61 Jordanian private hospitals by patients from Libya and Yemen and Jordan, including the government of Jordan, exceed $180 million.

The number of Libyan and Yemeni medical tourists going to Jordan has fallen by 80% over the first quarter of 2016. An increase in patients from Saudi Arabia helped, but the overall numbers are down 30% on 2015.

Fawzi Hammouri of the Private Hospitals Association attributes the large drop to the government’s decision to regulate the entry of Libyan, Yemeni and Sudanese and other nationals into Jordan through the visa system that will see further falls in numbers and revenue for medical tourism for the rest of 2016.

Hammouri explains, “People are going to India, Egypt, Tunisia and Turkey instead of here. Jordan could lose the status of being the top destination in the Arab world for medical tourism, in light of fierce competition from a number of countries in the region. The PHA should be allowed to issue visas for medical tourists, but the Ministry of Interior has not replied to our suggestion" 

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