DUBAI, United Arab Emirates – A report on the first quarter of 2015 prepared by the Dubai Health Authority (DHA) has cited treatment of 118,000 domestic and inbound medical tourists in 16 private hospitals licensed by DHA, all institutions that are part of the Dubai Medical Tourism Club (DMC).
The data was collected through the E-sources system in collaboration with the Dubai Statistics Centre (DSC) and a committee from the DMC.
The DHA’s medical tourism office conducted a revalidation and verification process on the data received from the hospitals.
Dr Layla Al Marzouqi, Director of Health Regulation and the Dubai Medical Tourism project at the DHA, said: “In 2012, the total revenue from medical tourism was Dh652,700,000 and now in quarter one of 2015 the revenue has gone up to Dh778,460,760. We expect this number to multiply by the end of 2015. Our target for 2016 was Dh1,185 million approximately, but we will surpass this soon and we aim to surpass our 2020 target, which is Dh2.6 billion, by an additional 20 per cent.”
Dr Layla added: “Dubai is seeking to position itself within the top 15 destinations in the world for medical tourism and the first in the region. According to the Medical Tourism Destination Index (MTDI), which was published by the Medical Tourism Association in 2014, Dubai ranks 17th in the world out of 25 countries that the index comprises and accordingly the seventh in Asia and second in the Mena region among the countries surveyed by the index.”
Dr Layla also pointed out that 46 percent of the current medical tourists were from Asian countries, 25 percent from GCC and Arab countries and 13 percent from African countries while the remaining 16 percent were from other countries, mainly the UK and Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) countries. Almost 44 percent of the medical tourists were in the age group of 25 to 45 and 10 percent were 65 years and above. The top health specialities availed of by the medical tourists so far were orthopaedic surgeries, dental treatments and cosmetic dermatology.