Ranked first in the Middle East and fifth in the world, Jordan is on the fast track to the top in the field of healthcare. Medical tourism in Jordan has received heavy investments for hospitals and staff, and the country is working hard to attain its goal of a billion dollars in revenue for the ministry of health by 2010.
Why Jordan as a Medical Tourism Destination?
Apart from the extremely attractive costs, which come to as low as 10 ~ 30 % of US costs, Jordan is one of the few countries, which due to their great diplomatic relations with other countries, allows for convenient travel. In fact, most nationalities do not even require a visa, or have access to visa-on-arrival facilities.
Also, the high quality standards in healthcare in Jordan, vouched for by the numerous international and domestic accreditations most hospitals have earned, ensure that visitors get only the best. Jordan has its own healthcare accreditation council in place, which is itself accredited by the ISQua, ensuring that healthcare in the country meets international standards.
Medical tourism in Jordan has seen an increase over the years, mainly due to high level of expertise provided by hospitals in the country. Apart from state of the art technology, a number of doctors in the leading hospitals in Jordan are certified by the American board or UK fellowship. Also, numerous measures have been taken to ensure there is no language barrier for visiting patients, with most hospitals training staff in English, Arabic as well as Russian.
Some of the most popular treatments include cosmetic surgery, neurological surgery, orthopedics, organ transplants and many others.
Of course, patients always have the option of taking some time off to visit some of the famous religious destinations in the country. Particularly revered by Christian and Muslim faiths, some popular destinations include Mount Nebo, where Moses is believed to have gone to view the Promised Land, River Jordan, where Jesus Christ was baptized and Madaba Map.
Vacationing options with your Medical Trip
Recently crowned one of the New Seven Wonders of the World, Petra is a major tourist attraction in Jordan. Apart from this, most medical tourists particularly favor the world-class spas on offer at the Dead Sea, the lowest point on Earth. Jordan has a well developed tourism infrastructure in place, with tourism being an important contributor to its economy. Visitors have a wide range of choice amongst hotels and resorts, and travel is extremely convenient.
Winter lasts from January to February in Jordan, with visitors advised to carry heavy winter clothing during this period, though summer can get extremely hot, lasting from June to August. November to March plays host to rains, with snowfall being experienced only in the peak of winter. Be sure to consult your doctor on the kind of clothes you need to carry depending on your condition.
In case your health permits it, do make time to visit some of the rich natural reserves in Jordan, such as, the Azraq National Reserve, the Shawmari Wildlife Reserve and the Dana National Reserve. Some other tourists hotspots include Mt. Nebo, Jerash, the Crusader castle at Karak and many others.
Like most other Middle East countries, Jordan is also known for its tradition of feasting. Available in the widest range possible, medical tourists can delight in the fact that many items are made with fresh and dried fruits and vegetables, grain, cheese and yogurt, making it extremely healthy.
Some popular dishes include mansaf, also the national dish of Jordan, which basically consists of lamb cooked in yogurt and seasoned with aromatic herbs and stuffed baby lamb. But if you do not like to experiment with your meals, there are plenty of international food chains, such as Burger King, Pizza Hut and McDonalds, to choose from.
Jordan as a tourist destination
Jordan is an extremely popular tourist destination, and the government has made several heavy investments in developing the tourism infrastructure in the country. In just 2008, over 6 million tourists visited the country, with health or medical tourists forming a significant chunk. Boasting of a well educated workforce, the country enjoys a stable political scenario, despite having a diverse ethnic and religious populace. Enjoying one of the lowest crime rates in the world, Jordan is particularly safe for tourists, despite its proximity to more volatile neighbors.
Though not one of the cheapest countries in terms of cost of living, medical costs are significantly lower here as compared to the US. The government has made sincere efforts to increase its healthcare sector, which include heavy investments in hospitals and highly skilled doctors, institution of a local accreditation council and the establishment of a dedicated counter at the airport, aimed at solely helping medical tourists. Medical tourism in Jordan is further aided by high quality data transfer between leading medical establishments in Jordan and those in USA and Europe.
Pointers for Medical Travel to Jordan
- There are numerous ATMs available in most places in Jordan, and all banks are supplemented with huge English signs to indicate the credit cards they accept.
- For cash advances, Visa is the most widely accepted card.
- The local currency of Jordan is the dinar, and money can be easily changed here, though a lot of major currencies are also accepted in many establishments here.
- Tourist visas are usually valid for three months and can be easily extended to up to three months.
- Arabic is the local language, though English is extensively understood, with the Jordanian upper and middle class using it as their second language. Other languages in use include French, Russian and various Caucasian languages, such as Chechen.
- Public transport, available via buses and trams, is quite efficient and tickets can be bought on the bus itself. Private bus companies have faster buses, and are more comfortable to travel in.
- Non smokers might have to make some efforts to find non smoking facilities as Jordan is home to one of the highest percentage of smokers in the world. So confirm with hotels before reservation.
- Taxis are the regular yellow, and are an inexpensive way to travel. All taxis are required to use their meter, so be sure to check before leaving.
- Souvenirs for home come in a wide range of prices and types. Some great options are, sand bottles, kefiyas or head scarves, narghilas or water pipes, bath salt and scrubbing mud from the Dead Sea and of course the world famous mosaics from Madaba, provided you are able to carry them back home.
- Avail the Ministry of Health counter at the airport, which is meant specifically to guide medical tourists. This has been a significant step by the government to improve medical tourism in Jordan.
Medical Tourism Corporation has arranged with its network hospitals in Jordan to have special guest suites designed to comfortably accommodate the patient and the accompanying guest while in the hospital. Also, MTC has made special arrangements with recovery resorts that have 24 x 7 nursing for any post-hospital discharge care, with adequate arrangement for the comfort of the accompanying guest. There is always an English-speaking personal case manager at the medical destination.
So, if you are looking for medical care abroad, Jordan is one of the places to consider seriously. Even if you are just planning a vacation, you may go to Jordan for pleasure and save some money by getting any pending medical or dental care done while there! There couldn’t be a better place than Jordan to recuperate and unwind.
Thus, medical tourism in Jordan is a complete package of health, fun, and savings. We hope this information will be a valuable aid on deciding on Jordan as a medical tourism destination of your choice.