Although people have avoided medical operations such as liver transplantation and hernia removal in Turkey during the COVID-19 period, they never stopped having hair transplants, according to a medical expert.
Reşat Baha, the chairman of the Private Hospitals and Healthcare Organizations Association (OHSAD), noted that there were unpredictable changes in people’s health-centered spending habits during the pandemic period, and many people had to struggle with advanced heart and cancer diseases without undergoing necessary controls.
“While many of our patients did not undergo treatments and follow-ups for their chronic problems in this period of more than a year, the fact that hair transplantation, breast prosthesis, nose aesthetics and botox filling operations have continued to increase,” Baha said.
He said that this rise should be examined as a sociological case.
Speaking at the 2021 Health Policies Summit organized by Turkey’s Health Policies Institute (TÜSPE), Health Services General Manager Ahmet Tekin underlined that the COVID-19 pandemic seriously affected health tourism in Turkey.
“In 2019, 23.4 percent of Turkish tourism was in the field of health. There was a 48 percent decrease in health tourism during the pandemic period,” Tekin said, adding that in 2019, the country had nearly $1.2 billion in health tourism revenue, but this figure decreased by 50 percent in 2020.
“Our 2023 target in health tourism is to target 1.5 million health tourists to our country and to achieve a health tourism income of $10 billion,” Tekin noted.
Informing that tourists from Syria, Iraq and Azerbaijan were in the top three in the hair transplant sector before the pandemic, Tekin emphasized that the number of German patients increased by 100 percent during the pandemic period.
Hurriyet Daily News