Dr. Surawit Konsomboon, the Thai Deputy Minister for Public Health, has met with Ms. Maria Larsson, the Swedish Minister for Children and the Elderly, during her visit to Thailand in the beginning of October.
He said that he has invited the Swedish Minister to lead Swedes to travel to Thailand for medical treatments since Thailand is considered a medical hub in Asia and internationally. He said that in 2010 the number of Medical tourists from Sweden was over 20,000.
Dr. Surawit Konsomboon said that Thailand and Sweden have long been cooperating on public health issues. From a recent discussion, he found that Sweden is short of physicians and medical personnel, resulting in long waiting periods for patients who need minor treatments. Thus, he has invited Swedes to travel to Thailand for medical treatments such dental surgeries and operations, and healthcare services such as spa, Thai massage and long-term healthcare homestay service for elderly.
Thailand aims to be a medical hub in Asia and internationally. The aim has been well achieved so far since the number of foreign patients travelling to the country for its medical services has increased every year.
According to the report from Thailand Development Research Institute (TDRI) in 2010, the number of Swedish patients in 55 private hospitals in Thailand was 21,056 while the total number of foreign patients was 1,373,807.
Dr. Surawit mentioned that Thailand and Sweden plan to cooperate more in public health sectors in the future. The issues will be further discussed in details and the memorandum of agreement will be signed later on.