The value of the Health and Wellness Tourism Congress in Santo Domingo

The Dominican Republic is a cost-effective solution in comparison to the rate of medical services in the United States, Europe and the major cities of South and Central America.

Dr. Alejandro Cambiaso. opening speech at the 4th International Health and Wellness Tourism Congress. dohealthwell.
Dr. Alejandro Cambiaso while giving the inaugural speech at the 4th International Health and Wellness Tourism Congress.

The 4th International Health and Wellness Tourism Congress in Santo Domingo is the perfect scenario to cope with other providers of products and services.

In short, it is a platform for multi-sectoral integration, business development, and great investment opportunities.

The health activity is organized by the Dominican Health Tourism Association and AF Comunicación Estratégica, who have demonstrated a complete trust in Medical Travel over the years.

Our services report

According to a report by the Department of National Accounts and Economic Statistics, appointed to the Central Bank of the Dominican Republic, in 2015 services accounted for 62.2% of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Tourism – framed in Hotels, Bars, and Restaurants – top at 7.6%, ranking 4th.

Tourism contributes a massive 25% of the foreign currencies that our country obtains. It also exceeds 14% of the total workforce, with over 620 thousand jobs.

According to the same entity, the total arrival of non-resident passengers by the end of 2017, which comprises foreigners and non-resident citizens, scaled to a historic 6.1 million.

That is an increase of 228 thousand (3.8%) compared to 2016. A substantial 96.4% were foreigners, and only 3.6% were non-resident Dominicans.

Governmental support

In that context, the industry best known as Medical Travel, promises to be an economic force in the Dominican Republic.

“Having already a consolidated leadership in the sun and beach segment, the next natural step for tourism development in the country is to integrate niche markets where we have important comparative advantages, such as health and wellness tourism,” said last week the minister of Tourism, Francisco Javier García.

Compared to other Medical Travel destinations, the Dominican Republic has a positive reputation on its conventional tourism, a solid free market economy, and a strategic location in the heart of the Caribbean.

According to the minister of Tourism, the entity supports the following:

  • An inter-institutional agreement to create the National Health and Wellness Tourism Board, to develop the legal and regulatory framework that organizes the activity.
  • This agreement is signed by the Ministry of Public Health, Ministry of Tourism, Dominican Association of Health Tourism, Association of Hotels and Tourism of the Dominican Republic and the Dominican Medical Association.

The support of this proposal by the minister is a key indicator for any entrepreneur or established businesses to network with other companies or providers in a sector that profiles an upgrade of our tourism offer.

In that sense and according to the International Healthcare Research Center, based on destination environment, medical tourism industry, quality of facilities and services, the Dominican Republic is at the 15th place in Medical Travel.

Compared to 2015, the country moved up three spots. And the numbers will continue to get better as the support of the public and private sector increases.

Congress in Santo Domingo

The main activity of the Medical Travel industry in the Caribbean, and most likely, in Latin America, is intended to the following targeting sectors:

  • Tourism
  • Health
  • Hotel/Hospitality
  • Spa and Aesthetics
  • Travel Agencies/Tour Operators
  • Airlines
  • Labs and Pharmaceuticals
  • Transportation
  • Free Trade Zone
  • Legal
  • Education
  • International Insurance and Hospitals

A huge step forward in the services offer is the support of Copa Airlines to the sector. Recently, Copa became a sponsor of the international congress, the first major airline that provides support to the sector, increasing its value and expansion.

The airline is among 30 other companies that have joined the main Medical Travel event in the Caribbean. The sponsorship shows strength and confidence in the niche.

Without a doubt, the Dominican Republic is a cost-effective solution in comparison to the rate of medical services in the United States, Europe and the major cities of South and Central America.

Thousands of people are increasingly seeking options for elective surgery outside their countries. We perform an estimated 40 thousand plastic surgery procedures per year.

Of course, there are other niches. More than 52 thousand Canadians sought treatment abroad in 2015. There, the 18-week average waiting list for treatment poses a great opportunity for our no-waiting list service.

If you provide any type of product or service to international patients or intend to do, the congress is an ideal scenario to network and create synergies among other providers.

Check out our Minute by Minute Feed