Malaysia's lucrative new business is to lure European clients to hideaway holidays for bigger breasts or a facelift. Malaysia's other major selling point is its ability to perform difficult treatments. According to the Malaysia Healthcare Travel Council, Malaysia reportedly received 641,000 foreign patients in 2011, 728,800 in 2012, 881,000 in 2013, 882,000 in 2014, 859,000 in 2015, and 921,000 in 2016. - "Statistics". George Medical Getaway, Medical Tourism Facilitator in Malaysia. According to a Tourism Malaysia official. "Hospitals catering to foreigners are not just in Kuala Lumpur but also in cities such as Melaka that are close to Singapore."
The number of Malaysia Healthcare Travel Council–endorsed medical facilities in Malaysia has increased over the years (e.g., 35 in 2009, 49 in 2011, 63 in 2012, 72 in 2013 and 78 in 2014, playing a role in increasing the official figures on foreign patients. - Malaysia Healthcare Travel Council (2014). "Directory". Healthcare Malaysia Magazine.
Malaysia is one of the world’s leading countries for providing fertility treatment according to the International Medical Travel Journal. Plastic Surgery and Cosmetic Medicine are popular as Medical Tourism destination in Malaysia. Competitive price makes Dentistry also makes Malaysia an attractive destination.
Among the most popularly requested operations are cardiac bypass surgery, the National Heart Institute is a leading center in the region, and fertility treatments, with the country's premier Damansara Fertility Centre claiming in vitro success rates that match top clinics.
She said, "We see medical tourism, which is fast-growing, as a niche with vast still-to-be-tapped potential." Price and privacy are the big drawing cards, says Marloes Giezenaar, a 26-year-old MBA who has reshaped 65 clients since setting up "Beautiful Holidays" on Penang island off Malaysia's north-west coast.
For around the same cost as cosmetic surgery in their home countries her clients get the surgery plus the chance to recuperate during a two-week holiday in a four-star hotel far from the prying eyes of acquaintances.
The most popular treatments, in order, are breast augmentation, liposuction, tummy tucks, facelifts and nose jobs. "In Britain a breast augmentation with implants is between £3000 and £5000 pounds, depending on what kind of clinic you go to.
Several Asian countries, including Singapore and Thailand are are targeting "medical tourism" as a growth area, and Giezenaar is co-chairman of the Health Tourism Promotion Taskforce of the Penang Tourism Council.
"Malaysia's got big potential for medical toursim. The hospitals are very good, spoken English is better than in many countries and a lot of Malaysian doctors trained in the UK and Australia."