Health tourism in the world during the last year recorded a growth of 14 percent and became the fastest-growing industry. The health sector is also becoming more and more interesting for the large multinational technology companies such as Samsung, Microsoft, Siemens … which are increasingly turning to the health sector.
Also, the investment companies confirm that the maximum level of private investments in the world in 2011 and 2012 was on the health sector, so that the world is increasingly talking about the industry that combines tourism and health.
Unfortunately, the statistical methodology in B&H can not review certain segments or types of tourist services, for example, tourist communities in the Federation of B&H do not have statistics on the number of visits and overnight stays in spa facilities.
According to the Tourist Board of the Federation of B&H, the study EUEXPRO 2 “B&H tourism brief situational analysis” contains the information that in 2009 the spa tourism generated about 420.000 overnight stays, or about 33 percent of the total number of overnight stays in BiH.
“Most of our spa centers focuses only on treatment, while neglecting other recreational opportunities. In Spa Centers should be separated the department for treatment from the department for recreation and entertainment activities. It is necessary to improve the overall infrastructure of spa resorts, such as accommodation, equipments for the treatment and recreation but also the around environment”, said for Fena, Tourist Board of Federation of B&H.
It is indicated the necessity to provide better access to all Spa Centers, and also spa centers should define a marketing strategy.
According to the Department of Statistics during 2012, at the spa centers of the RS was recorded the arrival of 46 681 visitors and 256 700 overnight stays, which is 40 percent of the total number of overnight stays during the 2012 in the area of the RS.
According to the information of the Secretariat of Tourism of RS in the first six months of 2013, there was a small decline in the number of arrivals and overnight stays by 1.7 percent, however, expectations are that this will be improved in the second half of the year when we expect higher attendance of spa centers in relation to the mountain and other tourist spots.
“Certainly, the largest number of overnight stays are marked in Banja Vrućica in Teslić, regarding to the largest number of accommodations, but also because of the offers”, said Tourism Organization of RS for Fena.
Domestic customers are the biggest beneficiaries of health tourism in RS, but, as pointed out by the Tourist Organization, in the last few years there is constantly an increase in number of visitors from abroad, primarily because of the quality of healing waters and competitive prices compared to the region.
Apart from Banja Vrućica, significant facilities for the development of health tourism can have Banja Laktaši, Banja Slatina near Banja Luka, Banja Dvorovi near Bijeljina, and spas of Višegrad.
“Health tourism is definitely one of the opportunities for the development of B&H economy. It is important to improve conditions, to renovate and increase the accommodation capacities, to modernize the services in accordance with the European and International standards and with the requirements of the tourists in the field of medical tourism, and to enrich the offers. The leading location in health tourism in the RS but also in B&H is Banja Vručica, the example that should be followed by others”, said the Secretariat of Tourism of RS for fena.