Anurak Thailand Tourism The tourist website about Thailand by Thaiways magazine, the most comprehensive guide to Thailand.
Contents : Hotels, Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai, Hua Hin, Krabi, Pattaya, Phang-nga, Phuket, Samui, Maps
  Cover story : 10 June 05
Vol. 22 No. 5
  Thailand...a Hub of Asia's Health Services
Visiting Thailand, you can get more than pleasure

  By Arokhaya
  Photos by courtesy of
  the Ministry of Public Health and
  Bangkok Hospital
Today, Thailand is the destination not only for vacationers, but also for those who want to have cost effective medical services. With world-class medical facilities and specialists, and warm hospitality of hospital staffs, patients from all around the world come to Thailand's leading private hospitals to get medical treatments which cover
health checks, optical services, dental services, rejuvenation and skin care, knee or hip replacement, face lifting, rhinoplasty, breast augmentation or reduction, ear and digital hearing aid, etc. Moreover, some hospitals even offer sex change surgery!
The world-renowned medical services in Thailand draw a number of foreign patients to this country.
According to the data of Office of Export Services, Department of Export Promotion, in 2003, there were 973,532 foreign patients receiving medical treatments from private hospitals in Thailand, drawing 27 billion baht which is about US$ 675 million to the country.
In the near future, Thailand's medical science is expected to advance considerably since the government of Pol. Lt. Col. Thaksin Shinawatra pays great attention to the development of life sciences.
Herbal medicine and products are produced by
state-of-the-art technologies.
As a result, Thailand, in cooperation with the USA's Asean Business Council, has set up the Excellent Life Science Center in Thailand in order to support research in biotechnology and to develop the related business in every aspect, ranging from health services to herbal medicine. Moreover, the government has recently introduced a policy to combine tourism with medical services. This will make Thailand one of Asia's health tourism centres.
Foreign patients coming to Thailand in recent years have largely been people from Asian countries, such as China, Japan and Korea. They mostly come for plastic surgery. It is very popular with young Chinese to have double eyelid or rhinoplasty surgery while the elderly prefer face lifting surgery. As for Japanese and Korean women, breast augmentation seems to be the most popular choice.
High standard services and the Thai hospitality
Apart from Asian people, Westerners also have trust in Thailand's masterful surgeons. They usually come to have liposuction or to reduce the size of the breasts to avoid backache.
Dental care in Thailand costs less than that of
overseas countries.
Moreover, it is reported that more and more foreigners have come to have treatments for heart attack, cancer and other illnesses or even a brain operation in Thailand, in stead of Hong Kong and Singapore as they did formerly.
Why do foreigners love to make use of medical services in Thailand? There are many good reasons. First of all, Thailand boasts large numbers of skillful surgeons and physicians, and the standards of treatment are as good as those in other advanced countries.
Another reason is that the costs of treatment are only a fraction of those abroad. For example, in the advanced countries, a teeth arrangement treatment costs over US$ 3,750 (150,000 baht), but in Thailand it costs only about US$ 1,250 (50,000 baht). For rhinoplasty, Thailand's costs start at only $ 250-500 (10,000-20,000 baht), while the overseas rate may start at US$ 2,500 (100,000 baht).
Not only the prices are attractive, but Thai hospitality is also one of the important elements that have impressed foreign patients with the medical services in Thailand. The well-trained, English-speaking medical staffs are so attentive to all needs of the patients and make them feel at home.
The most pleasant reason for foreigners to get medical treatments in Thailand, however, is that they can use the savings from the treatment fees to travel around the country and enjoy its beauty and experience its unique culture.
At present, it is very easy and convenient to get a treatment and travel in the country as there are many Thai travel agencies that can arrange a health tour program for you. You can do so by just visiting the websites of such agencies or those of private hospitals.
Then you can read all information and choose a medical vacation package from the list ranging from annual check-ups to teeth whitening, from double eyelid surgery to knee or hip replacement, and many more packages.
A list of doctors with their educational background and work experience is available for you to study before making a decision. Moreover, you can also choose your favourite hospital and accommodation where to stay during the period of treatment, and even a holiday destination after the treatment.
In addition to Bangkok which is Thailand's most important tourist city and important medical centre, the southern island of Phuket--the Pearl of the Andaman Sea--is now fast becoming a medical holiday destination.
Imagine, how nice it would be to recuperate or have a peaceful rest in this lovely tropical island after getting a beauty treatment or an operation! Besides Phuket, Chiang Mai is another interesting destination for such relaxation.
Choose your favourite hospital
and accommodation and enjoy yourself.
With all these excellent potentialities, Thailand is soon becoming a new hub of Asia's health services. And if you are thinking of having a beauty treatment or operation, why don't you choose Thailand as your medical holiday destination?

For the correct pronunciation of romanized Thai words, see
Romanization System of the Thai Language.

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