Medical Tourism

Body of evidence

Tourists have flocked to Thailand for years for medical procedures at knock-down prices, but holistic health care can be lacking. Photo: AFP

A number of Asian countries, among them India, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand, are making big bucks from the rapidly growing market for medical tourism, which may be worth US$100 billion a year by 2015.

Wednesday, 17 April, 2013, 4:56am

The rise of medical tourism: buyer beware

Illustration: Ken Cheng

Hong Kong-based writer Monica (not her real name) managed to shed serious weight following a stomach bypass operation in India five years ago. Her attempt at body contouring, however, turned into a nightmare.

8 Apr 2013 - 10:47am

Zero quota on mainland mums in hospitals 'bad for economy'

Senior Counsel Johnny Mok believes the courts, not the administration, should resolve the right-of-abode issue. Photo: Edward Wong

Government measures to stop floods of mainland mothers visiting Hong Kong to give birth could hurt the city's medical tourism industry, a member of the Basic Law Committee has warned.

5 Mar 2013 - 11:33pm 26 comments

Medical tourists to Japan unfazed by Diaoyus row

Zhang Lan awaits her X-rays during a check-up in Asahikawa.

As relations between Tokyo and Beijing appear increasingly in need of major surgery, officials in the far north of Japan are hoping the infant industry of medical tourism can thrive unscathed.

24 Oct 2012 - 12:21pm

Medicine under the sun

Most people associate medical tourism in Southeast Asia with urban centres, such as Bangkok and Singapore, where they can find hospitals resembling five-star hotels, well-trained doctors and nurses, state-of-the-art equipment and personalised service.

11 Jul 2012 - 12:00am

Doubt cast on health insurance plan

The administration should set aside its proposed voluntary health insurance scheme because it is being rushed through without enough debate and the new government may simply reject it anyway, a patients' rights group said yesterday.

17 May 2012 - 12:00am

See big picture on public health care

Our public hospital system is far from broken, but it could easily get that way without health care reform. Chronic shortages of medical staff, the increasing pressures of an ageing population and demand from mainland patients are straining services, sometimes dangerously. Chief executive-elect Leung Chun-ying knows the challenges and will have to make reshaping the sector a priority.

22 Apr 2012 - 12:00am

Hospital system in need of overhaul

A series of medical incidents at Tuen Mun Hospital has prompted yet another review of our health care system. This time the Hospital Authority is to focus on clinical governance across all hospitals after three specialists failed to spot signs of internal bleeding from a brain scan and prescribed the wrong medicine to an elderly man.

6 Dec 2011 - 12:00am

Royal celebration

The people of Thailand will have a chance to put aside recent worries today when they celebrate the birthday of King Bhumibol Adulyadej, the world's longest-reigning monarch, who came to the throne in 1946.

5 Dec 2011 - 12:00am

Treat the disease

Do we have enough doctors in Hong Kong? Is protectionism to blame for this perceived manpower crisis in hospitals? As soon as the people of Hong Kong decide how much to spend on public health care, it is easy to calculate the number of doctors to train (or import). We have about 1.8 doctors per thousand people in Hong Kong.

14 Nov 2011 - 12:00am

Self-interest is standing in the way of a vital cure

The exodus of public hospital doctors is not only threatening the well-being of patients, it is also causing a firestorm of controversy in the medical community. It's not hard to fathom why. It boils down to private-sector doctors protecting their own interests under the guise of preserving medical standards.

9 Nov 2011 - 12:00am

Private hospitals must be more open

Twice recently, failure to report serious incidents in obstetrics departments has left private hospitals looking less than open and accountable, if not engaging in cover-ups. In the latest case to emerge, a Baptist Hospital doctor dropped a newborn baby on the floor while it was being delivered, resulting in bleeding from the head.

30 Oct 2011 - 12:00am

Billions up for grabs - if we act

Hong Kong, logic would say, should have tapped handsomely into the burgeoning mainland market for cosmetic surgery. Linguistic and cultural affinity and transport links aside, we offer a high standard of medical care, advanced treatment, quality service and world-class facilities.

14 Aug 2011 - 12:00am

High costs dampen HK's cosmetic surgery appeal

Hong Kong's cosmetic surgery industry could soon find itself in need of a facelift, as services in other Asian countries prove more affordable.

High rental costs and wages have severely limited so-called medical tourism in the city, while regional rivals such as Taiwan and South Korea attract droves of newly rich mainlanders seeking treatments.

7 Aug 2011 - 12:00am

Vietnam: just what the doctor ordered

Vietnam's health care has undergone a revolution in recent years as luxurious hospitals, dental clinics and cosmetic centres continue to proliferate to cater for a rapidly growing domestic and international market.

5 Jul 2011 - 12:00am