Investors see medical tourism potential in Taiwan (IMTJ)
|Medical tourism news 21 October 2010 |
|IMTJ newsletter |
|Taiwan Land Development Corporation plans to build three healthcare villages in |
Hualien, Kiment and Hsinchu, capitalizing on the surging popularity of medical
tourism. Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI) is a national research
organization that serves to strengthen the technological competitiveness of
Taiwan. ITRI suggests that the global medical tourism industry is worth US$40
billion in 2010, with up to 40 million people being medical travellers.
|Taiwan Land Development Corporation believes that Taiwan offers excellent medical |
care, so can take advantage of business opportunities in medical tourism as it
has gained a reputation in the world and is particularly respected by the Chinese.
A recent economic cooperation framework agreement between China and Taiwan will
encourage trade and tourism between the two countries.
|Development of the village in the eastern county of Hualien is progressing well, |
and the company will apply to the Hualien county government in November to reserve
20 hectares of the village specifically for international travellers. The company
will provide medical-related hardware and software and team up with hospitals to
attract business from those seeking health checkups and cosmetic surgery in
Taiwan. Many of the Chinese who will soon be permitted to travel to Taiwan
individually are expected to seek cancer screenings and cosmetic surgery.
|In 2008, about 5000 went to the island to undergo health checkups and cosmetic |
surgery. In 2009, that increased 40,000, mostly from China. More than 100,000
are predicted annually, as fast as Taiwan can build and staff hospitals. The
market is set to expand when Taiwan opens to Chinese tourists on a foreign
individual travel basis in early 2011. Taiwan’s hospital care is world-class.
Despite a massive effort at upgrading its health care system, China’s is not.
Two years ago, Taiwan instituted an ambitious plan to make the country appealing
to foreigners seeking healthcare by adding the check box "medical care" to visa
application forms. Taiwan had a very hard time attracting Europeans and Americans
not of Chinese origin. But the opening of Taiwan to Chinese tourists after 2008
has made a huge difference. Although for the time being mainlanders are allowed
only group travel to the island, local hospital business has been flourishing
from the influx of cross-strait patients. Taiwanese businessmen based in have
China set up health and medical clubs with annual membership fees for Chinese
members to be taken by the clubs on six-day trips to Taiwan that include physical
Members of a 17-person tour group from Shinkong Medical Club of China's Jiangsu
province praised Taiwan's medical advancements after a week-long sampling of
Taiwan's medical tourism. 12 had full-body non-invasive health checks at Taipei
City's Shin Kong Wu Ho-Su Memorial Hospital in Taipei as well as residing at a
five-star natural hot spring resort in Taoyuan County and enjoying tailor-made
nutritional meals throughout their stay. The entire package costs US$2000, about
twice the price of a regular tour package.
|Taiwan's medical tourism will become one of the biggest attractions for mid-to |
high-income Chinese tourists. Although other countries, such as India, Thailand
and Japan are all targeting Chinese for medical tourism, Taiwan is the best
choice for Chinese tourists because there is no language barrier, the cost is
reasonable and there is a sense of warmth and familiarity between Chinese and
Medical tourism news21 October 2010