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Health tourism and health travel. Sociological approach and conceptual clarification

Πολυξένη Μοίρα, Δημήτριος Μυλωνόπουλος


Tourism is a socioeconomic phenomenon with important effects on human life and on national economies. The journey, i.e. the movement of people from their permanent residence in another place, is the key element of tourism. The basic component of tourism is leisure and relaxation, which are fundamentals rights of all people. The broad concept of tourism allows determining as tourism, different movements, such as business travel, participation in conferences, in education etc. In this broad context the travel for health reasons, is called "medical tourism". This study through the review of the literature on the use of the term medical tourism and related concepts reviels, reveal that the term medical tourism is widely used by both actors in the tourism industry, and in health system. It appears that the term medical tourism, although it is used widely is not valid/reliable. As for the content of the term, there is acute confusion due to the contradiction that contain the words tourism and hospitalization, which is a key element of medical tourism. In conclusion, it's necessary to distinguish the movement of people according to the dominant motive in a) health tourism, where the dominant motive of the movement is the holiday - leisure, with supportive service the receiving of a kind of medical care and b) travel health, where the dominant motive is the restoration of health


medical tourism, health tourism, spa tourism, health travel

Full Text: PDF (ελληνικά)

DOI: 10.18780/e-jst.v9i2.745


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