Mashhad hospitals admit 6,000 foreign patients a year

July 26, 2019 - 22:55

TEHRAN – Mashhad hospitals admit an average of 6,000 foreign patients per annum, a deputy for the Mashhad University of Medical Sciences has said.

“Each year, 6,000 medical travelers from various countries are admitted and hospitalized in Mashhad hospitals and this number could reach 20,000 if outpatient treatments are taken into account,” Shapour Badiei said on Wednesday, CHTN reported.

“Most medical travelers to Mashhad are from Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, Iraq, Afghanistan, Tajikistan, and Turkmenistan,” he said.

“Open-heart surgeries, vascular surgeries, general surgeries, orthopedics, skin, hair and beauty services, dental services, as well as women’s and infertility services constitute the most health-care needs for the tourists.”

For the time being, 12 hospitals are offering special services to foreign patients in Mashhad, he said.

Iranian hospitals admitted nearly 70,000 foreign patients over the last [Iranian calendar] year (March 2018 – March 2019), according to the medical tourism department at the Ministry of Health.

The number of foreign patients in Iran grew by 1.5 percent over the last year compared to its preceding year; and this year the figure is expected to double, thanks to targeted medical marketing.

Medical tourism made an economic contribution of around $1.2 billion to the country in the last Iranian calendar year, according to data compiled by the department.

In April 2018, the rotating presidency of the International Health Tourism Conference of Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO) was handed to the Islamic Republic for a three-year term.

Mohammad Jahangiri who presides over a national center for developing health tourism said earlier in May 2018 that Iran has the capacity to annually earn $7 billion in medical and health tourism, though the sector now brings in only one-seventh or even lesser of the sum.

The Islamic Republic has set its goals to exceed its yearly medical travelers to around 2 million in [calendar year] 1404.

Each day, Mashhad plays host to thousands of travelers and pilgrims who come from various cities, neighboring countries and even other corners of the globe to visit the massive, elegant holy shrine complex of Imam Reza (AS), the eighth Imam of the Shia Muslims.