Switzerland: good news for medical travel

A medical mask lies on the table against the background of the flag of Switzerland. The concept of a mandatory mask regime for residents of the country and tourists in Switzerland during a pandemic.

Switzerland is the latest country to completely drop all of its Covid-19 related entry requirements. The Federal Department of Home Affairs Switzerland advises that there are no longer any public health measures at the border for people entering Switzerland. People no longer have to present evidence of vaccination, recovery or a negative test.  This is good news for inbound medical travel. While Switzerland is more a health tourism destination than a medical one, the country does get business from neighbouring countries, and from wealthier patients further afield.

The entry freedom does not apply to those from countries or regions without a variant of concern. There are currently no countries on the list of countries with a variant of concern.

Mask wearing has been almost completely removed, with masks now only required on public transport and in healthcare institutions. The requirement to show a Covid certificate to enter places such as cinemas, theatres, restaurants, and events has also been removed.

The country’s Federal Statistics Office has said that in 2017 36,000 foreign residents went to Switzerland for treatment in hospitals and clinics.

No one goes here to save money, as it is one of the most expensive countries in the world. It caters for the wealthy and does offer specialist treatment not readily available elsewhere.

Most medical tourists are from Europe, Asia, USA, Russia and the Middle East. Clients are from countries with rapidly growing middle classes such as Russia and China, but also from the former Soviet states and Gulf states.