Healthcare is one of the fastest-growing sectors in Thailand. Not surprisingly, the healthcare sector is expected to be one of Thailand’s economy key drivers.
Marketresearchthailand.com as Thailand Healthcare Consulting shows that healthcare spending increased dramatically, both by the government and the private sector. Here, we will tell you about the Thailand healthcare sector in brief.
- Healthcare spending in total (including investment): $1,051 billion
- Percentage of GD: 6.6%
- Number of hospitals: 1,421 (1,075 public and 347 private)
- Hospital beds: 157,072 (122,470 in general hospitals)
- Physicians: 31,484 (4,664 surgeons, 11,610 internists and 5,328 pediatricians)
- Dentists: 15,951
- Medical device market: $2.7 billion
The domestic demand for healthcare is increasing. There is also a surge in medical tourists coming into Thailand. These two situations lead to the quick expansion of the private hospital sectors. The number of international patients in the country is growing steadily.
There is also an increase in visits from expatriates who live in Thailand and neighboring countries.
According to market research Thailand, in 2017, there are 3.3 million visits from foreign patients to Thai hospitals. The visits from foreign patients are for medical tourism (2.4 million visits) and expatriates living in Thailand and neighboring countries (900,000 visits).
Visits from patients from the Middle East are decreasing while visits from Myanmar, China, and Japan are increasing.
Government and Healthcare
Compared to other countries in Southeast Asia, Thailand’s spending on the healthcare sector is the second-highest, at 77%.
In 2008, the government of Thailand spent $246.8 million in the healthcare sector. By 2015, the spending increased dramatically, $376.3 million in total. The government, however, is not the only player in the healthcare sector.
Thai governments offer various incentives to capitalize on the medical tourism market development. Thai government attempts to create an environment in which medical tourists will be able to access Thailand’s healthcare services with ease.
Part of the Thai government’s strategic plan for the foreseeable future is to become one of the world’s medical hubs.
Private Sector and Healthcare
In 2008, the private sector spent $78.3 million in the healthcare sector. By 2015, the spending increased significantly to $120.4 million. Thai government attempts to provide universal healthcare, and private hospitals are benefited from that.
The patient numbers in local hospitals rise sharply, thus leading patients who have financial means to seek treatment at private hospitals.
The private sector is the main driver behind the medical tourism industry in Thailand. Large hospitals are expanding rapidly through acquisitions and mergers to meet the increasing demand.
Today, there are 347 private hospitals in Thailand, up from 321 hospitals in 2011. About 40% of these private hospitals are located in the Bangkok Metropolitan Area.
The private sector is expected to not only grow but also become more and more competitive. This is because non-traditional players like huge conglomerate companies are given entry to the healthcare sector.
Some Thai public hospitals also notice the potential opportunities of the healthcare market, thus developing services that match the private hospitals’ standards.
Thailand’s healthcare sector is growing, and in the foreseeable future, it is expected to be one of the country’s main economic drivers.
According to market research Thailand, the market size of the healthcare sector is estimated to be $1,051 billion, accounting for 6.6% of the country’s GDP. Both government and the private sector are involved in the fast-growing of healthcare in Thailand.