The Number of Medical Tourists in Czech Republic Still Growing

Foreign customers discover diagnosis possibilities in the Czech Republic.

Olomouc, Czech Republic, September 19, 2008 --( Medical travelling is a well-known, quickly developing and very popular branch of tourism industry. Clients from USA, Canada, UK or Germany have long ago discovered the high-quality standards of medical services offered by the clinics in Central Europe. Combined with moderate prices that the local facilities can offer their customers from abroad, the Czech Republic came to be the top European destination for medical tourism. This, of course, brought rush development in the field of medical travel operators.

Whereas most of the tourism agencies concentrate on the well-proven branches of aesthetic surgery and in vitro fertilisation, some companies keep experimenting with other services and offers. Eva Bendova, the managing director of one of these “innovators” - the medical and spa tourism portal - revealed for us some of her company’s ideas for the months to come.

“Most agencies concentrate on the expensive procedures and treatments to attract clients from abroad. We, on the other hand, believe that not all customers want and can afford to spend thousands of Euros on plastic surgeries and not all women need in vitro fertilisation. That is basically where we see the weakest link of this business - the services are too specific,” says Bendova and continues: “We thought it would be better to offer services everyone, or almost everyone could use and we came to the conclusion that screening might be what we were looking for.”

The company contacted some prestigious Czech clinics for participation and succeeded - one of them was willing to offer their services to foreigners via the internet. It took some time to create the complete concept and to synchronise the needs and requests of the clients, the clinic and the travel agency, yet the result was worth it - they managed to create a set of high-quality screening programmes in the Czech Republic, with all the necessary comfort and service like transport or accommodation, still the final prices did not exceed the standard European and American rates. These programmes can also be combined with sightseeing tours. “It is a very good combination - our clients do something for their health and they can at the same time feel like “regular” tourists. It makes it easier for them to forget about their complaints,” Bendova explains. As an example, the following possibilities are worth mentioning:
· Two-day Screening Programme - a complete medical examination, including the check-out report with recommendations and advices for further treatment
Of course, absolute generalisation is also not the right way to go, and that is why the company decided, having consulted the clinic’s doctors, to offer some more focused programmes too.
· Gynaecology - complex gynaecological examination including laparoscopy
· ENT - complex ENT examination including minor surgery
· Orthopaedics - focused complex examination including X-ray
· Urology - complex urological examination, including diagnosis and treatment

“We have so far got good feedback from our clients and we hope this trend will go on,” says Bendova. “I think the important thing here is the freedom - we do not tell the clients to stay here for treatment, we just tell them what is wrong with them and the further decisions on what to do lies in their own hands.”

Igor Fes
+420 585 411 144