More and more patients going to Germany for medical treatment are choosing to go to Berlin. With 18,000 specialist doctors, 121,500 hotel beds, 70 hospitals, and state-of-the-art spa facilities, the German capital offers an excellent location for medical and health-related travel. All the large Berlin hospitals have international patient centres to look after foreign patients and many hotels make special provisions for medical tourists.
Wellbeing and health-related tourists are a profitable target group for the German capital. While a typical visitor to Berlin will stay for 2.3 days on average, hotels are finding that health visitors stay for 10 to14 days.
Charité – Universite Medicine Berlin
hospital recorded a 20 % growth in international patients in 2011. The Charité has an international reputation and extends over four campuses with more than 100 clinics and institutes bundled under 17 CharitéCenters.It has an international patient centre, while the Charité-owned Virchow Guesthouse is located on the campus, offering patients and accompanying family members 22 guestrooms in a bed and breakfast hotel.
Burkhard Kieker of visitBerlin
explains, "Combining Berlin’s two big players, the health care sector and tourism, is the obvious thing to do. A good year ago we begun to gather together all those involved so as to promote the wellbeing and health tourism sector. So as to be well prepared for the future the city is tapping into this trend and we see great growth potential for Berlin". A section of the visitBerlin website is devoted to health and offers detailed information on hospitals, specific treatments, wellness, and health checks.
Petra Hedorfer of the German National Tourist Board
(GNTB) adds, "We have firmly anchored the health trend in our marketing and sales activities. Our central marketing platform, the GNTB website, provides information on health and medical-related travel in 26 different languages including Russian and Arabic. With the website we provide potential travellers from important source markets with extensive information on Germany and promote it as one of the leading health countries in the world".
For the last year, visitBerlin has been actively marketing health tourism abroad. A close network of partners has grown up and in spring 2011 a website was launched in English, Russian and Arabic as these are the countries where demand is highest. At international trade fairs such as Arab Health
in Dubai, visitBerlin advertises the German capital as a destination for health-related travel often in collaboration with Berlin Partner, Health Capital Berlin-Brandenburg
and the GNTB.