The results of a 2018 visitor survey have been published by the Azerbaijan Tourism Board (ATB). It shows only 12% visited for shopping or education or for health and medical care. ATB is part of the State Tourism Agency that is however continuing to work on an action plan for the development of health and medical tourism to Azerbaijan.
The Azerbaijan Tourism Board (ATB) is Azerbaijan’s national tourism promotion organisation. ATB carried out a visitor survey in 2018 which showed that only 12% visited for shopping or education or for health and medical care. The results do not split these three categories; however, health and medical tourism is one area where trips last 10 days or more.
ATB is part of the State Tourism Agency that has been working on a new strategy for developing health tourism but this seems to have been delayed indefinitely.
Azerbaijan has potential to develop health tourism, particularly for therapeutic mineral and thermal water treatments. Naftalan, in central Azerbaijan, is home to natural spas and facilities that have curative crude oil. 65,000 local and foreign health tourists went to Naftalan, Galaalti and Duzdagh in 2018.
The healthcare tourism industry in Azerbaijan has its roots in traditions and infrastructure built during the Soviet period. For many decades the facilities, having lost the state paid-for 1.5 million Russian visitors, went into decline, with many destinations still needing an upgrade to meet the demands of modern-day international health tourists.