Bridge to medical tourism

Lantau Development Alliance proposes to develop the artificial island of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge into a location for medical tourism.

Lantau Development Alliance proposes to develop the multibillion-dollar artificial island that is a crucial element of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge into an information technology centre and a go-to location for medical tourism.

The HK$35.9 billion Hong Kong Boundary Crossing Facilities project is part of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge that will connect Hong Kong to the mainland when it is expected to open by the end of 2017.

The boundary crossing facilities will be located on an artificial island of about 150 hectares in waters northeast of Hong Kong International Airport. The facilities will provide clearance for goods and passengers. Under the alliance’s proposal, the island would be able to be used for many other purposes.

The alliance suggests that the government consider developing medical tourism on the island; “Hong Kong’s world-class health care resources give it the potential to develop high-end medical tourism. Small-scale medical centres could be established to offer tourists health care services such as check-ups, nutrition consultation service and vaccination.”

But local health and medical tourism experts argue that Hong Kong’s edge is that the city has the technique to handle complex medical procedures. But the problem is that the hospitals that have such techniques are the public hospitals. The queue to get treatments at the public hospitals is very long. A city is capable of developing medical tourism only when there is excess capacity to do so.

Tourists may not be interested in getting Botox injections or medical check-ups in Hong Kong because such services are much cheaper in Mainland China and Thailand.