TEHRAN (Dispatches) - Deputy director of Resources Development and Management at Health Ministry Kamel Taqavi has said that around 500,000 to 550,000 foreign nationals visited Iran in the last local calendar year (March 2018-March 2019) and the country is expecting a 20% growth in the current year (March 21, 2019-March 20, 2020) to boost the figure to more than 600,000.
Taqavi said at the Health Tourism Development Summit at the Health Ministry that in recent years Iran has been witnessing the growth of the health economy and health indicators, despite having rival countries such as India, Turkey, and Thailand.
"However, as in other sectors, the health sector, if it is to grow, has to move towards increased productivity and, of course, it is important to pay attention to the justice indicator, especially as the government’s orientation is now towards reducing the out-of-pocket payments for health,” the official underlined.
Recently too, head of the office for health tourism of the Ministry of Health and Medical Education Saeed Hashemzadeh said foreign health tourists who enjoyed Iranian medical services in the last Iranian year (March 21, 2018 – March 20, 2019) stood at 500,000 to 550,000.
Hashemzadeh said that the number of foreign health tourists visiting Iran in the current Iranian year will definitely be higher, adding that about 72,000 of the patients were hospitalized and the rest received outpatient services.
Hashemzadeh said that Iran can host up to 2.5 million health tourists every year.