International Medical Tourism In Korea On Rise

Finally, The Ministry Of Health and Welfare revealed the numbers of foreign patients treated in Korea in the year of 2014. We here at were very eager to get our hands on the new statistics to see how the numbers had gone up since 2013.

And well, the numbers did not let us down at least, Korea is still the number 1 place to get your plastic surgery procedures done and the trend seems to be upwards, looking really good for the Korea.

The official number of foreign tourists sought medical services in Korea last year was 266,501 and their total spending reached to 560 billion Korean won (506 million USD)

The Ministry Of Health and Welfare said the number got up more than 50,000 patients annually when comparing the statistics to the year 2013. That means a hefty rise of 25% annually or 136 more patients every day on average when comparing to the year 2013.

The official numbers of international medical tourism patients treated in Korea between 2009 to 2014 are here:

2009: 60,201

2010: 81,789

2011: 122,297

2012: 159,464

2013: 211,218

2014: 266,501

2015: expected to reach over 300,000

All the figures include foreign people living in Korea who have their own private insurance, so the numbers are not totally accurate when talking about international medical tourism in Korea.

Majority of the patients of 2014 were Chinese with 79,481 patients. Americans came second with 35,491 patients followed by Russians, Japanese, Mongolians, Kazakhs, Vietnamese, Canadians, United Arab Emirates, Filipinos and Uzbeks being the most common nationalities seen on the hospitals and clinics all over Korea, mostly in Seoul though.

On average each person spent 2.08 million won (1,900 USD) for their treatment, but United Arab Emirates nationals spent clearly the most on average with astonishing 15.37 million won (14,000 USD)

If we look closer to the statistic, it shows that by services, internal medicine had 79,000 patients. Followed by plastic surgery operations with 36,000 patients. General check up was pretty popular also with 35,000 people going through it.

For Chinese medical tourists, the plastic surgery was the most popular service while Russians, Americans And United Arab Emirates nationals were mostly treated for internal problems. Meanwhile the Japanese patients came after oriental medicine.

Medical tourism is clearly on a big rise in Korea now. We will stay here waiting for the 2015 statistics to see how big rise we are going to see on this year.

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