Sunday, July 24, 2016

Thailand - Thailand can be centre for elderly care

WITH A RISING elderly population, Thailand will promote it|self as a centre for elderly-care service, as it already has the healthcare and medical infrastructure |to serve this group of people, according to a Commerce Ministry plan.

Commerce Minister Apiradi Tantraporn said the ministry's Business Development Depart-ment planned to promote the growth of medical and healthcare businesses to serve the senior population, which is not only getting bigger in Thailand, but also in many other countries.

"This group of people needs more healthcare and medical service, while they have high spending power. Thailand has hospitality facilities to serve this group of the world population and could be a hub of medical and healthcare service in the world market," she said.

These kinds of services are not as expensive here as in many other countries, while they have high quality and offer good hospitality. Thus many foreigners choose to use these services in Thailand each year.

The ministry has forecast that the number of senior people in Thailand will reach 13 million, almost one-fifth of the total population, by 2020. Their number is expected to reach 17.5 million by 2030.

Each year, more than 4 million foreigners who travel to Thailand use medical or healthcare services here.

Businesses developed

Under the idea of making Thailand a hub of medical and healthcare service, the ministry drew up a plan five years ago to provide such operations with knowledge on business operation, service, and cost reduction. Since then, 442 businesses have been developed as professional medical or healthcare businesses.

Among those, 55 companies have passed an international test and been accepted under an international standard.

The ministry has also promoted more funding and joint ventures by international investors in this type of business.

Senior-care businesses can be categorised into three types: day care, long stay, and nursing service at home.

Thailand now has about 400 healthcare service businesses. |Of these, 49.2 per cent are in Bangkok.

Petchanet Pratruangkrai

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