Over 600,000 medical tourists in a year: Why patients flock to Dubai for healthcare

According to Dubai Health Authority report, 39% were from Asian countries, 22% were from Europe and the Commonwealth, and 21% were from Arab and GCC countries

File photo
File photo

A Staff Reporter

Published: Wed 12 Apr 2023, 1:53 PM

Last updated: Wed 12 Apr 2023, 2:21 PM

Dubai saw remarkable growth in medical tourism in 2022, with 674,000 medical tourists visiting to seek treatment. The total revenue generated by medical tourism last year is Dh992 million, which shows an increase of Dh 262 million from 2021.

According to a Dubai Health Authority (DHA) report, 39 per cent of the medical tourists were from Asian countries, 22 per cent were from Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States, and 21 per cent were from Arab and Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries.

Awadh Seghayer Al Ketbi, Director General of the Dubai Health Authority, said Dubai’s ability to provide high-quality patient-centred medical care had accelerated its growth as an Arab, regional, and international healthcare destination. “Dubai’s strategic location, safety, exceptional infrastructure, and world-leading amenities add to the factors that have raised its status as a medical tourism hub,” Al Keti said.

The three specialities that saw the highest number of medical tourists were dermatology, dentistry, and gynaecology. Medical tourists from Asia, Europe, and Africa, including from GCC and Arab countries, also visited the city for treatment for orthopaedics, plastic surgery, ophthalmology, fertility treatments, hospitalisation, and recovery.

Al Ketbi further said Dubai’s vision to provide a world-class healthcare model and an integrated medical care system that offers cutting-edge facilities, advanced technologies, smart solutions, and state-of-the-art treatment methods, as well as highly-qualified professionals across all fields of medicine, have driven its global competitiveness in the sector.

Highlighting that the healthcare sector plays a vital role in enhancing the quality of life of people, Al Ketbi said: “Dubai Health Authority has adopted a clear strategy to expand the role of this vital sector in raising the welfare of the community. DHA is committed to attracting investments in the sector by collaborating with prestigious international healthcare institutions to establish facilities that can meet growing treatment needs across all specialities.”

Regions from which Dubai attracted the highest number of medical tourists in key specialities include:

Dermatology services

- Asian countries – 35 per cent

- European countries – 26 per cent

- Arab and GCC countries – 20 per cent


- Arab and GCC countries – 37 percent

- Asia – 29 per cent

- Europe –19 per cent

Gynaecology services

- Asia – 54 per cent

- Europe – 18 per cent

- Arab and GCC countries – 13 per cent

Orthopaedic surgery

- Asian countries – 36 per cent

- European countries – 23 per cent

- Arab and GCC countries – 23 per cent

Plastic surgery

- Arab and GCC countries – 37 per cent

- Europe – 28 per cent

- Asia – 19 per cent

Ophthalmology services

- Asia – 33 per cent

- Arab and GCC countries – 27 per cent

- Africa – 17 per cent

Fertility treatments

- Asia – 38 per cent

- Arab and GCC countries – 24 per cent

- Europe – 18 per cent

Hospitalisation services

- European countries – 39 per cent

- Asian countries – 28 per cent

- Arab and GCC countries – 18 per cent


More news from Lifestyle