Before the COVID-19 pandemic, 500,000 foreign patients may have visited Singapore annually for medical treatment, although this number is disputed. Healthcare providers are however now saying they’re seeing more foreign patients from Indonesia, Malaysia, Cambodia, India, Vietnam, and Laos.
The 500,000 foreign patients figure was provided by Singapore’s Yusof Ishak Institute. But since 2011, the government has refused to promote medical tourism or provide official figures.
With very high prices for healthcare in Singapore, many would disagree with this convenient round number. The figure probably originates from a many years old statement from a global organisation promoting medical tourism. Real figures in 2019 could be as low as 45,000.
In 2019, tourism numbers to Singapore were 19 million but in 2021 this dropped to 329,000.
Irrespective of actual historic inbound patient numbers, it is true that medical tourism numbers are increasing.
Singapore is known in Asia for its high quality, and premium health care services, ranging from health screenings to surgeries.
The introduction of quarantine-free and test-free entry to Singapore for all fully vaccinated travellers and the introduction of quarantine-free entry to Singapore for travellers who are not fully vaccinated make it easier for medical tourists.
New offerings include fitness and wellness packages to promote holistic wellness in urban living.