A press conference in London on Wednesday 5th July heralded a new chapter for tourism to Thailand, as a team of senior doctors from the Bangkok Hospital, Phuket, announced plans to market their services in Britain, with support from the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT).Medical tourism remains a niche market in the UK, but is steadily growing as British citizens discover significant cost-savings for treatments taken overseas.
Bangkok Hospital, Phuket, plans an initial focus on the most popular of these - plastic surgery and dental treatments, with a view to expanding procedures according to demand.
With a highly skilled team of surgeons, most having overseas qualifications, Bangkok Hospital Phuket is perfectly placed to welcome visitors requiring treatments ranging from facelifts, liposuction and nose augmentation to extensive dental work. As one of Thailand’s leading private hospitals, standards of surgery and hygiene are incredibly high. Most treatments only require an overnight stay in hospital, leaving patients free to recuperate in Phuket’s luxury hotels, safe in the knowledge that their doctor is only a phone call away.
Khun Tanes Petsuwan, Director, TAT London said, ‘Medical tourism in Phuket will help the island attract more UK tourists and capture what is an emerging niche travel market. Over 714,489 British and Irish tourists visited Thailand last year, and visits by those seeking quality medical procedures could add significantly to that figure’.
Former patient Sharon Coyne, who visited Bangkok Hospital Phuket earlier this year for an eye-lift procedure, attended the conference and praised the approach and skill of her surgeon, saying, ‘Walking into the hospital was like walking into a five-star hotel. I felt confident from the start that the surgeons would take good care of me. Aside from a little discomfort, I experienced no ill-effects, and was impressed when my surgeon gave me his home and mobile telephone numbers to call if I suffered any problems. You just wouldn’t get that level of service in the UK! I’m going back later this year for a tummy tuck, and I can hardly wait!’
Sharon’s experience was so positive that she is currently in the process of setting up a travel business called Far Away Beauty, working in partnership with Bangkok Hospital Phuket, due to launch in September 2006.