Health tourism is a segment with great opportunities for the Dominican Republic. Last year, this sector generated revenues of more than US$1,321 million for the country, according to the Second “Study and Diagnosis of Health and Wellness Tourism” of this Caribbean nation.
In 2022, 262,902 foreign patients were received in the Dominican Republic, of which 179,085 came for dental treatments; 40,000 for plastic surgery; 26,290 other surgeries and 17,527 for outpatient and preventive medicine.
“This represents in a general sense that 3.7% of the passengers who came to the country came for health and wellness tourism,” says the study presented by Alejandro Cambiaso, president of the Dominican Association of Health Tourism (ADTS), as part of the development of the Sixth International Congress of Health and Wellness Tourism hosted by the DR.
The Medical Tourism Association (MTA) reported that the sector generates approximately US$100 billion worldwide annually.
Despite the fact that the Dominican Republic has become the leading medical tourism destination in the Caribbean, number 2 in Latin America and number 19 in the world, and that it has the conditions to consolidate itself as a true health tourism destination, the sector faces challenges that must be overcome in order to continue its development.
The study indicates that it is of the utmost importance to maintain the fiscal incentives for projects in the health tourism sector, because this implies having centers of excellence that are internationally accredited.
Health tourism, it cites, has experienced significant growth, but faces major challenges related to the regulatory framework, incentives, trained human resources, unfair competition and infection control.