Seoul benefits from medical tourism

The revenue that Seoul hospitals and clinics earned from treating foreign patients has risen sevenfold over the past four years. Seoul is the cornerstone of Korea’s medical tourism.

According to the Seoul Metropolitan Government, 178,519 patients from abroad visited Seoul and spent $260 million on treatment in 2013. This is a dramatic increase from 2009 of 40,607 foreign patients.

40,100 went for surgery, while 21,364 went for cosmetic surgery. Third was dermatology with 19,949 patients.

Most of the revenue came from 39,257 Chinese nationals, followed by 14,446 Russians, 19,158 Americans), Mongolians and people from the United Arab Emirates.

The top average spend was by people from the United Arab Emirates, with Kazakhstan second. The UAE spend was 370% up on 2013.