From lifestyle-related diseases to multi-organ transplants to elective surgeries, these patients spend up to Rs 26 lakh per head and stay up to 12 weeks during and after the treatment.
While some hospitals are expecting the numbers of their foreign patients to reach 50% of what it was during the pre-Covid days, others are looking at a bigger surge or 100% rise in the numbers. They believe that suitable weather, improved air connectivity and the city increasingly adopting technology in treatment are drawing these patients to Bengaluru, placing it ahead of Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai.
Dr Vikram Siddareddy, CMD of United Hospitals Bengaluru, which began functioning in 2021 and has had 80 enquiries this year, said his “hospital has easily convertible areas for isolation for foreign patients and conducting surgeries too”.
Manipal Hospitals, Bengaluru, which claims to be serving almost 50% of the international patients coming into the city, confirmed in a statement to TOI that the number of their foreign patients is on the rise. The hospital is expecting a 10% increase in the number from the pre-Covid 2019-20.
Suresh Ramu, CEO & co-founder, Cytecare Cancer Hospitals, said they treat about 500 foreign cancer patients each year and are expecting the number to rise to 1,000 by next year. To accommodate the patients better during their long-stay accommodation, the hospital provides special food, translators and visa, forex and local transfers. BGS Gleneagles Global Hospitals is seeing around 200 foreign patients every month and expects the number to double by this yearend. The hospital’s pre-Covid-19 numbers have been about 2,000. Biju Nair, cluster COO, Gleneagles Global Hospitals, said, “We are as good as other cities in India when it comes to clinician expertise, flight connectivity, cost of stay and a cosmopolitan city landscape.”
“Delhi and Chennai get more foreign patients than Bengaluru. Having said that, over the past few years, Bengaluru has seen a lot of patients on medical tourism,” said Dr Deepshikha, GM International Marketing at Sparsh Hospitals. Dr Deepshikha expects 8,000 outpatients and inpatients across the hospital’s three branches in the city this year
Jindal Naturecure Institute (JNI), which saw more than 500 foreign patients in 2018, is expecting at least twothirds of that number to come in this year. Citing reasons for foreign patients choosing Bengaluru, Dr Babina NM, chief medical officer, JNI, said that good air connectivity to destinations in West Asia, Africa and South Asia is one of the reasons. “ Bengaluru also facilitates the adoption of source technology, making it readily available for patients,” she said.