Vietnam holds huge potential in medical tourism, which is expected to help the country attract more foreign tourists, including those from Japan, according to the Health Ministry.
Vietnam’s medical travel sector has been dependent on overseas Vietnamese, particularly from the USA, plus patients from nearby countries Cambodia and Laos.
The country has a strong traditional medicine sector, while Vietnamese acupuncture techniques have been popularised and used in many countries, including Mexico and Cuba.
Each year, it is claimed that Vietnamese people spend approximately US$2 billion for medical services abroad. In 2018, domestic hospitals received 300,000 patients who were overseas Vietnamese and foreigners. There were also 100,000 dental tourists.
The quality and number of private hospitals in Vietnam has improved over the past five years, and the prices for medical services in Vietnam are much lower than those in many countries.
When tourists are allowed back normally, Vietnam is developing a project to attract more overseas Vietnamese and foreigners to use high-quality medical services in the country. In the 2021-2030 period, medical travellers will initially be encouraged to visit Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Quang Ninh, Hai Phong, Hue, Da Nang and Khanh Hoa.
In the future, the government plans to develop more high quality clinics, to serve both Vietnamese and foreign patients.