ECONOMY

Hotels look to medical tourism

Greece could expect revenues of up to 400 million euros from the growth of medical tourism in the next two to three years, an event on the niche market organized by the Hellenic Chamber of Hotels heard on Thursday.

According to a study presented at the event in Athens, while Europeans do not generally travel abroad for medical treatment, the middle classes in Asia and America tend to visit various destinations for that purpose. The chamber added that a new European Union Directive on Cross-Border Healthcare will sooner or later allow EU citizens to enjoy medical services across the bloc that will be covered by their own country?s social security systems.

Some 5,500 Libyans who were injured during the war in the North African country earlier this year stayed at hotels in Athens and Thessaloniki and were treated at local clinics. The only problem has been with the payment from Libya, as the Libyan side has so far only paid for about 10 percent of the total of 150 million euros that it has been billed by Greek enterprises.