Study on joint Baltic health tourism

 

The Tourism Observatory has carried out a conceptual study on the possibilities and directions of a joint health tourism strategy for the three Baltic countries (Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia)

The report provides a summary of research undertaken on health tourism in the Baltic States identifying which resources and products are common to the region as a whole and which are unique to each country.

The Baltic States have had a fairly successful collaboration in tourism (especially promotion) for several years. Collaborations and clusters are seen as being useful tools for sharing good practice, improving quality and branding.

A Baltic Health Tourism Cluster was established in 2013. Following attendance at the launch of the Cluster, Laszlo Puczkó undertook a study involving several respondents from each of the Baltic countries from the health, wellness, spas, medical and/or tourism business sectors.

This analysis sought to help the countries identify what is specific in their health tourism resources, attractions and products at the same time as working towards collaboration and a common regional brand for health tourism.

The results of this study, which is available for purchase, will form the basis of a joint Baltic Health Tourism Strategy.

Lithuania has seen a boom in medical tourism. Body Bureau, a London-based agent and pre-assessment clinic that specialises in infertility treatment, health screening and dentistry, says that healthcare visitors from the UK to Lithuania have increased by 19.5% over the last two years. It says that within this timeframe the total number of patients visiting Lithuania from abroad was up by 42.3%, although it does not say where these figures come from. One Vilnius-based infertility clinic, Northway, reports a doubling of patient numbers in the past year.

Aaron Zukauskas of Body Bureau explains, “Vilnius is one of the most affordable, capitals in Europe and has a lot to offer, including a beautiful old town. Lithuania is rated one of the top countries in the world for the quality of its health and hygiene. This helps make the country very attractive for people who want to improve their health, or get quality healthcare services.”

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