Cutting edge holidays
W hat’s the ultimate holiday must-do in Dubai? A visit to Burj Al Arab, dune bashing and cruising down the Creek in a dhow are top of most lists, along with trips to the beach and the malls. Now you can add a visit to the plastic surgeon’s office for a smaller nose, fuller pout or nip-and-tucked body to the itinerary as medical tourism takes off in the UAE.
Dubai played host to just under 10 million visitors last year and authorities are set to see one million medical tourists added to that annual figure by 2020. So as our report on page 16 reveals, we will have to get used to seeing women – and men – swathed in bandages on the sun loungers next to us, or taking the lift to the top of Burj Khalifa.
Surgeons from the UAE are themselves travelling abroad – on mercy missions to give babies and children with cleft lips and palates the gift of a smile. While these children are bullied or ostracised for their looks, they are also often unable to feed or speak because of their deformities. That’s why it is so important for these missions – many of which are sponsored entirely by the UAE – to carry out corrective surgery and see the lives, not just the faces, of these children changed for the better. Let me know what you think. Until next week,