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Thailand has Begun Issuing One-year Visas to Medical Tourists

Thailand has begun issuing new one-year Medical Visas since January 2023, as the nation strives to become an international healthcare tourism hub. It allows medical patients from around the world to look for medical attention and treatment, especially for conditions that require long-term treatments.

Applicants can now stay up to one year in length and it eliminates the need for multiple visa applications. The outlook of the package seems to be appealing in the promotion of convenient healthcare to meet the ever-rising demand for medical treatment abroad.

This Pacific Prime Thailand article brings you a closer look at the one-year visas for medical tourists.

What You Need to Know about Thailand’s Medical Visas

The medical visa permits foreign patients to travel in and out of Thailand within a year, along with allowing a maximum stay of 90 days at a time. Applicants will be required to provide proof of the following when applying for the visa:

  • Confirmed hospital appointment with a local medical institute
  • Health insurance with minimum coverage of THB ฿3 million (USD $86,000)
  • Adequate financing for treatments (a minimum of THB ฿800,000/USD $22,800)

Medical visas are limited to patients who need continuous treatment for over 90 days. Hospitals are required to outline the applicant’s treatment plan and expenses. Those wishing to extend their maximum stay must report to immigration authorities every 90 days.

It is also possible to seek an extension beyond one year with additional medical certificates by paying THB ฿5,000, which is the cost of a one-year medical visa.

Treatments that qualify for new medical visas include:

  • Cancer
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Organ transplants
  • Anti-aging
  • Cosmetic surgery
  • Anti-aging and regenerative medicine
  • Dental care

The one-year medical visa also provides the option to bring your spouse and children with you, without additional financial requirements.

The Latest on Health Tourism in Thailand

Thailand aims to attract more foreign visitors during the post-pandemic era by positioning itself as a world-class medical treatment destination. Leading the efforts are hospital operators like Bumrungrad Hospital and Bangkok Dusit Medical Services, in collaboration with the Thai government.

At present, tourists seeking medical treatment can enter the country on either a tourist or non-immigrant visa – with the exception of visitors from the following countries who can visit on single entry:

  • Bahrain
  • Kuwait
  • Oman
  • Qatar
  • Saudi Arabia
  • The United Arab Emirates
  • China
  • Cambodia
  • Laos
  • Myanmar
  • Vietnam

Thailand was one of the first Southeast Asian countries to completely reopen its tourism industry. Its ability to respond to the outbreak of pandemics brought in a revenue of about USD $5,687 million from the market for medical travel. The market is anticipated to expand steadily for the next 10 years.

Further reading: The Present and Future of Thailand’s Medical Tourism Industry

What Makes Medical Care in Thailand Attractive to Foreigners?

Thailand is ideal for medical tourism for various reasons. Medical tourism in Thailand is expected to grow at a strong rate, attracting many visitors. According to the World Travel and Tourism Council, it is the fifth most prominent market globally and first in Asia.

If you look at the medical tourism cost comparisons across countries, it is not difficult to find Thai private healthcare services more affordable than many other medical tourists’ home countries. After careful calculation, you might be surprised by the amount of money you can save.

Not only that, people choose to travel to Thailand for treatment for other reasons. Even though some may have access to free medical care through the public healthcare system in their own country, such services often come with long waiting lists – especially for surgery-required conditions.

Those who do not wish to receive treatment end up turning to private healthcare services, which often come with hefty price tags. Thanks to the economical and high-quality healthcare in Thailand, it is possible to receive treatment at a reasonable price – particularly with the right insurance.

What you get from Thailand’s private healthcare is exceptional. Doctors and professionals are well-trained in the latest medical procedures and treatments to provide top-notch medical assistance. Hospitals are equipped with state-of-the-art medical facilities to provide the best-in-class services.

To compare prices and services of private healthcare in Thailand, download our free Public vs. Private Healthcare in Bangkok Guide


Whether you’re looking to buy a health insurance plan as a medical tourist or expat, it is nerve-racking to choose from many insurance plans and decipher a whole lot of insurance jargon before you can find a suitable plan for your needs.

That’s why many people prefer to work with a reputable insurance broker like Pacific Prime Thailand. Our 20+ years of industry experience, expert advisors, and value-added services are some of the many reasons why we are the broker of choice for individuals, families, and businesses across the globe.

If you’re looking for travel insurance in Thailand, long-stay visa insurance in Thailand, or other types of health insurance, contact us for a free plan comparison or impartial insurance advice today!

Frequently Asked Questions

Which hospitals are the best for medical tourism in Thailand?

Renowned hospitals like Bumrumgrad International Hospital and Samitivej Sukhumvit Hospital are fully devoted to promoting medical tourism in Thailand. However, it doesn’t necessarily mean that other hospitals are inferior. Private Healthcare in general provides high-quality care to medical tourists.

How many people go to Thailand as medical tourists?

Thailand’s medical tourism industry is ranked top 5 globally and first in Asia. It attracts over 3 million medical tourists every year, generating revenue of USD $5,687 million in 2022.

Why do people go to Thailand for medical tourism?

The most obvious reason is that medical care in Thailand is more affordable than in other countries. It is ideal for those seeking high-quality medical services. Another reason is the allowance from the Thai government on the medical tourism visa, permitting a 90-day stay at a time for a year.

Content Creator at Pacific Prime Thailand
Eric is an experienced content writer specializing in writing creative copies of marketing materials including social media posts, advertisements, landing pages, and video scripts.

Since joining Pacific Prime, Eric was exposed to a new world of insurance. Having learned about insurance products extensively, he has taken joy and satisfaction in helping individuals and businesses manage risks and protect themselves against financial loss through the power of words.

Although born and raised in Hong Kong, he spent a quarter of his life living and studying in the UK. He believes his multicultural experience is a great asset in understanding the needs and wants of expats and globe-trotters.

Eric’s strengths lie in his strong research, analytical, and communication skills, obtained through his BA in Linguistics from the University of York and MSc in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) from the University of Bristol.

Outside of work, he enjoys some me-time gaming and reading on his own, occasionally going absolutely mental on a night out with friends.
Eric Chung