Health tourism, driven by the trend of aging populations in developed countries, and an increased focus on healthy living, has shown above-average growth rates in the global tourism market.
Given the significant competitive advantages Croatia has, such as qualified personnel, a good reputation for proving health services, competitive prices, but also the proximity and accessibility to major markets and general tourist attractions, there is massive potential for the industry to grow in Croatia.
Whilst there is still a long way to go, a number of places in Croatia are already providing some great services in medical tourism. Liane Hristomirova, who is from Vienna in Austria, has shared with us her experiences.
“Croatia has been our family holiday destination for many years – we have visited various beautiful places both in the countryside and on the coast but Dalmatia unanimously won our hearts and we started coming regularly to Split, Trogir and Sibenik area. When I was diagnosed with arthrosis in my both hands I was advised to swim a lot to alleviate the pain and was prescribed a physiotherapy treatment. Although at first glance the idea seemed unusual I decided to combine my holiday in Croatia, which would provide me with endless opportunities to swim, with physiotherapy on site,” Liane says.
She then searched on the Internet and selected Priska Med in Split for the treatment.
“From the very first epistolary contact I knew that I have found the right place – my emails and requests were promptly answered in impeccable English, a doctor’s appointment was immediately confirmed and scheduled and the first visit to Priska Med’s facilities confirmed the good impressions: the place was kept immaculately clean and welcoming, the staff – highly professional and with friendly disposition.”
Liane had extensive treatment at Priska Med and says that there were excellent results with staff does doing a great job on a daily basis.
“I was met with great care every day and the treatments were professionally and swiftly conducted. Along the skills, I also appreciated the friendly attitude and genuine smiles of Nikolina, Ivana, Antonia, Valentina. Along with the treatment they were creating positive energy for the day. Last but not least I would like to thank the Head of Priska Med – Ms. Ljubica Tabain – an intelligent, charismatic and very energetic person – under whose professional guidance and perfect sense of order everything run smoothly and a solution to everything was promptly found. She had her own quiet way of dealing with challenges and the place reflects her values – Priska Med is kept extremely clean and ordered; the interior is bright and modern, making you feel welcome and inviting you to relax under the professional staff care. She has set high standards of conduct and a humanistic way of interacting with patients that demonstrates sincere care and concern for them simply because they are human beings.”
Liane says that during her regular visits she was able to observe that all other patients were treated in the same professional but friendly manner as she was.
“There was always a joke for the children to make them relax before the treatments and for the elderly man who could hardly walk but whose face brightened up when he was warmly greeted by the staff. Thank you for being so thoughtful and caring for patients! You bring hope and relief to many people who suffer from chronical pains.”
Health tourism in Croatia today includes over 100 wellness centres, more than 15 specialised hospitals and a large number of private clinics spread across the country, although there are an obvious concentration in Kvarner, Istria, North Croatian counties and in the Zagreb area.