The addition of VAT on aesthetic treatments is making patients’ spirits low… They can now turn to other more clement climes, in particular Mauritius, where a high-quality medical and tourist infrastructure awaits them.

Since the beginning of June, VAT at 21% has applied to medical and cosmetic surgery treatments. Belgium had to comply with European directives, and it has done so….

This applies not only to the doctor’s fees but also to those of the anaesthetist, the stay, the hire of the operating theatre, the paramedical staff and their fees, the equipment (breast prostheses which are already taxed at 6%!!!, botulinum toxin, fillers,……) additional tests (blood tests, ECG, X-rays, …..), and therefore ALL the financial contributors, which increases the overall bill by 21%!

There are several ways of dealing with this:

– the doctor cuts his fees: this will only reduce the bill by a very small amount, as medical fees play little part in the overall amount AND doctors, like many other professions subject to austerity, are not prepared to reduce their earnings.

– the operation is carried out without VAT. This practice is, of course, illegal and can only be carried out in small private structures where there are few financial players, often the doctor alone, and all too often in the back room of a poorly or ill-equipped doctor’s surgery! Beware of the legal and medical repercussions!

– the patient decides to go and have the operation in another country, where cosmetic surgery is not subject to these constraints but is nevertheless of high quality, in a high quality medical AND tourist environment!

This third solution is increasingly practised and, after the decline of the North African empire due, all too often, to malpractice and, above all, to the advent of extremism and its direct consequences, certain countries have become popular. These include Asia and the emirates, principally Dubai. Asia has little or nothing in common with the European canons of beauty, and Dubai, even if the prices of interventions seem attractive, is still very expensive in terms of stay, as the climate is very arid and does not allow for much holidaying.

One country that has recently made a name for itself is Mauritius.

Mauritius has a tradition of expertise in hair transplantation and has been attracting patients from over 30 different countries (including Canada and the United States) for almost 15 years.

The Apollo Bramwell Hospital, recently taken over by the Omega Ark group, has recently developed an international cosmetic surgery service thanks to the arrival of Dr Van Den Broeck, a Belgian plastic surgeon who has been practising for over 20 years.

The Apollo Bramwell Hospital was in existence for nearly 7 years before it was recently taken over by Omega Ark. It is the only hospital in the Indian Ocean that complies with international standards, particularly those of the United States, as it is recognised by the JCI. The hospital has 200 beds and 4 operating theatres, and offers top-quality medical and hotel services, including royal suites for the price of a shared room in Belgium.

Dr Van Den Broeck continues his main activity there, which is essentially focused on breast surgery, and is currently creating a buzz in the Zone. He operates on patients from all over the Indian Ocean (Mauritius, Réunion, Madagascar and Mayotte) as well as from Asia, Africa and, of course, Europe…. several Belgian patients have already taken the plunge.

Surgery prices there are 20-30% lower and a stay in a dream hotel is often booked, although the price of the stay may not necessarily make up the difference between our prices and the total cost!
Dr Van Den Broeck assures us that he operates under optimum conditions, and in fact had himself operated on for a shoulder problem earlier this year;

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