French Medical Tourism Is Growing Steadily

Ashley Nault - Apr 28, 2014
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France is one the world’s leading tourist destinations. Today many travelers combine their holiday with first rated medical treatment. Most of the hotspots in France – the beautiful Aquitaine wine country, the snowy mountains of Rhone alps, Bourgogne expansive landscape and Riviera Cote d Azur’s wonderful beaches – provide visitors with different and exciting experiences. For those looking for city tours, Paris has a lot of adventures to offer, Lyon is best known for its stunning architecture, and Dijon will surprise you with its gastronomic delights. Every region in France hides a number of places worth seeing as well as quality medical facilities. No wonder medical tourism is growing fast in the country.

According to Euromonitor International the recent global economic downturn has had insignificant effect on the demand for health and wellness tourism in France as a whole for the period between 2007 and 2012.

It is also worth noting that destination spas and other spas significantly increased in current value by 9% and 7% respectively in 2012. Interesting thing is that the country’s urban spas are expected to continue growing thanks to their geographical proximity to homes of wealthy professionals who are overwhelmingly willing to spend money making frequent regular visits for treatment.

It has also come out that medical tourism in France has been expanding much faster than in other European countries according to Euromonitor International. The majority of visitors to France come from the UK and the US. It has also been found that there are some surgical operations which are 30% and 50% cheaper in France than in the US and other European countries.

However, at the moment the internationally set legal framework for regulation of medical tourism is still of limited use. Patients might not be comprehensively covered by personal insurance or they may be unable to seek compensation for any medical related malpractice. French medical services providers are thus careful when it comes to treating medical tourists.

Looking ahead, Euromonitor International expects the health and wellness tourism in France to increase in constant value and at a CAGR of 8% over 2012 to 2017 forecast period. In spite of all the new developments in recent times, spas are still set to remain as the fastest growing category in health and wellness tourism in France even as the country continues to attract more urban professionals while at the same time also catering for France’s rapidly aging population characterized with a fairly high level of purchasing power.

Spas are also expected to remain an essential investment for all luxury hotels operating in France in coming days. It is also expected that an increasing number of 3 star hotels will start providing spas as a key component of their products and services.

France spa operators on the other hand are expected to closely monitor all ongoing growth in medical tourism in order to foster development of strategic partnerships and also offer complementary products and services which target the same consumer base as well as medical tourism.

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