Sun, Sand, Sea and ... Surgery?


Move aside, hipster travellers – there’s another group of tourists bringing in millions for Penang.

As many as 14 to 16 million people across the globe travel for medical reasons, be it for higher quality healthcare or affordability outside their countries of residence.

Orbis Research valued global medical tourism at US$19.7bil (RM76.7bil) with an estimated compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 18.8% while Allied Market Research valued the market at a staggering US$61.2bil (RM238.3bil) with a CAGR of 15.0% from 2017 to 2023. It is however a volatile market, marked by disparate projections and trends due to the speculative nature of the industry.

In Penang, however, medical tourism is a booming sector – as it has been for the past two decades.

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