TANZANIA – The Jakaya Kikwete Cardiac Institute (JKCI) in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, has significantly increased the number of foreign patients seeking medical treatment.

In the first quarter of 2024, JKCI admitted around 80 patients from various African countries, a substantial jump from the 15-25 patients it typically received during the same period in previous years.

According to JKCI Director Dr. Peter Kisenge, the surge in foreign patients is a testament to the Tanzanian government’s investment in improving specialized and super-specialized healthcare services at the institute.

“The statistics show that in the first quarter of this year, JKCI admitted about 80 foreign patients from different African countries,” he stated. 

The patients hailed from 15 African nations, including the Comoros, Mozambique, Malawi, Zambia, and Rwanda.

Moreover, JKCI has also started attracting patients from European countries, such as Poland, China, Turkey, and Germany, who visit Tanzania as tourists.

 “In this week, we have admitted three patients who were tourists from Germany,” Dr. Kisenge revealed. 

Previously, tourists suffering from heart-related issues would be flown directly to neighboring countries like Kenya and South Africa for treatment. 

Still, they are being referred to JKCI, which Dr. Kisenge described as “an indicator that JKCI is now a globally trusted institution.”

The increase in medical tourism is expected to positively impact Tanzania’s tourism industry. As Dr. Kisenge noted, “health is the number one security for tourists, especially the elderly, so JKCI has become a solution and an answer for tourists who visit our country.”

JKCI is collaborating with the local member of Parliament’s office to expand its reach further and conduct a week-long outreach medical service in Namtumbo District, Ruvuma Region, from July 8th to 13th. 

The free medical camp will focus on testing and treating heart diseases in children and adults. Those with cardiac issues will receive immediate treatment or be referred to JKCI in Dar es Salaam for further care.

Namtumbo legislator Mr. Vita Kawawa expressed his support for the initiative, encouraging residents to take advantage of the opportunity and undergo medical check-ups. 

This outreach program is part of JKCI’s efforts to expand its reach and provide quality healthcare services to communities across Tanzania.

JKCI’s success in attracting a growing number of foreign patients, including tourists, is a testament to the Tanzanian government’s commitment to improving the country’s healthcare infrastructure and positioning it as a hub for medical tourism in the region. 

As JKCI continues to expand its services and reach, it is poised to play a crucial role in enhancing Tanzania’s reputation as a premier destination for quality healthcare.

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