By Frank Martin
Medical Tourism, a growing but still complex offer of the leisure industry worldwide, grew reasonably in 2021 and 2022 despite the global pandemic, a result that is good news for the industry and the world economy in general. who are still fighting for recovery.
The current revival of the important medical sphere of the holidays accounted for 102 thousand 60 million dollars in 2019, and is projected to reach 272 thousand 70 million in 2027.
In terms of volume, the world market for this type of travel represented 24 million 45 thousand 80 patients in 2019, and is projected to reach 74 million 358 thousand 59 by 2027.
It is really enough for the progress that is needed.
However, current obstacles in the path of the development of the international tourism branch do not allow complete certainties, according to an extensive report published on the Internet in the first days of 2023.
Although there is optimism about an area that could not be stopped by Covid-19, the war in Europe continues to affect it deeply. Also some unresolved consequences of the epidemic.
The doubts are also due to the fall in the relationship between the global supply chain and the price system for raw materials, say specialists.
The situation in the Caribbean regarding this medical and tourist area is nonetheless frankly optimistic.
The Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO), in this framework, last week called on its member countries to be encouraged and attract more visitors to the region to maintain the rate of presence of travelers, including medical tourism.
Driving factors are the forecasts for 2027 and another for even earlier, for 2025, which sees an excellent opportunity in the health segment for the Caribbean and for other destinations on the planet.
A survey in Europe last year revealed that medical and health tourism could grow by $16.88 billion in two more years.
But for that kind of result will need a compound annual growth of business and investments, a detail worth taking into account from the still strong economic sequel of the Covid-19 and the endless Ukrainian war.
However, the study indicates that a strengthening of competition around the branch is expected, a very profitable element because it stimulates the market.
Returning to the Caribbean, there are favorable possibilities for it. In 2022 the islands were collectively among the fastest recovering regions globally, rescuing between 85 and 90 percent of total arrivals in 2019. And this goes for health tourism, it is claimed.
Some tourism destinies have shown it. This is the case of the island of Dominica, which maintains its ecological and close-to-nature tourism with strong national support.
Health tourism has made good progress in the Caribbean. In the Dominican Republic, a good effort was made to keep it “up” despite the pandemic. In that country, health tourism grows at an annual rate, from 25% to 30%.
Studies affirm that the trend there is maintained. This happens because it is a preferred place for those who demand specialized medical services around the world.
As for Cuba, it is an island widely recognized for the quality and professionalism of its medical care services, which confirms it as a health destination par excellence.
Its best offers are the natural benefits, the climate, its safety, and a distinguished scientific and professional level of global reach.
Cuban medicine is specialized in actions against the pandemic and natural disasters abroad. It has an enviable network of hospitals and places of health care generally
Many tourist destinations around the world, like the Caribbean, are betting on offering health programs linked to vacations. The forecasts, thus far, justify such plans.
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