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By: B&Company Vietnam
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If in the past, when Vietnamese people had demand for checking up their dental health, dental treatment or cosmetics dentistry, it is difficult to find a quality dental clinic, especially in rural regions. Nowadays, the issue above has matter nobody. With amazing growth in the recent ten years, Vietnam gradually makes its name well-known in world dental map.
Development of Vietnam Dental Industry
(Unit: Unit, Unit: Million USD)
Source: Ken Research, B&Company calculation
As presented in the chart, in 2013, Vietnam has only 1739 dental clinics, the number grew up to 1846 in 2018 and is forecasted to grow at a total of 2038 dental clinics in 2023 with expected revenue as 435 million USD. The growth of Vietnam dental industry is the result of the increasing Vietnamese people’s awareness of dental care as well as the rising demand for dental tourism from the outside.
Vietnamese people is now being more conscious about dental health
According to the study of National Hospital of Odonto-Stomatology, in 2005, about 50% of Vietnam population had never had a dental visit (this rate for children is 60%). But in 2015, based on a survey of Dream Incubator Inc over 1948 Vietnamese people in 5 key cities: Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi, Haiphong, Danang and Cantho, this rate shrank to 28% and has continuously diminished in recent years due to changes in living standards. Among age groups, people from 26 years old are considered as target audience with the highest frequency rate of having dental visit. These age groups are also main labor force who generates income for society. Supported by improving economic condition, people in Vietnam are increasing their demand for dental care services, especially for cosmetic dentistry, and willing to pay a high price for quality service.
The Frequency of Having Dental Visit of Vietnamese People
Source: Dream Incubator Inc, 2015.
According to Associate Professor Pham Nhu Hai, Former Dean of Department of Dentistry, Vietnam-Cuba Friendship Hospital, in the past, most of patients came to his clinic due to dental problems such as decayed tooth. And now the number of people coming for asking advice about cosmetic dentistry progressively increase. Having the same opinion as Associate Professor Pham Nhu Hai, Mr. Dinh Xuan Quang, an orthodontist of Invisalign, said that, about 5 years ago, he had only 5-10 patients having cosmetic dentistry demands per day. But now, the number of that kind of patients is double or triple. And the cost for invisalign orthodontics is extremely high, 25-149 million dongs or more. Therefore, it could be assumed that cosmetic dentistry has been a potential market segment of dental industry to focus and invest more.
Vietnam is emerging as a hub for dental tourism
Vietnam attracts tourists from around the world due to not only its amazing natural attractions, friendly people, peace and stable political situation, but also quality dental procedures in recent years. According to Ho Chi Minh City Department of Tourism, each year, Vietnam welcome appropriate 100,000 tourists coming for cutting-edge dental care services, bringing in a revenue of $150 million. Besides, Asia Pacific Region is forecasted to account for about 40% of the dental tourism market share by 2023. The market is tending to shift to Southeast Asia such as Philippines, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam. And compared to other Southeast Asia countries, Vietnam has strong competitive advantages of affordability, high quality and attractive after-sales services.
Firstly, dental services in Vietnam are priced very competitive, much lower than those in developed and other developing countries due to cheaper labor and facilities. For instance, the cost for teeth whitening in Vietnam is only $187, 36% cheaper than in Thailand and about two fifth of the price compared to USA. With this amount of difference, tourists coming to Vietnam for dental service may enjoy an almost free vacation since they can save much money from not using dental services at their hometown.
Average Price Comparison of Some Dental Services
Source: Navii, dentist-prices.com
Secondly, Vietnam prides itself as having one of first-class dental care in the world. In Vietnam, abilities and experience of dentists who treat foreign patients are managed strictly by Vietnam Dental Tourism Project. Vietnam Dental Tourism Project (VDT) is the largest independent dental network with 30 dental clinics in 5 provinces (Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi, Nha Trang, Can Tho and Vung Tau) and serves mostly inbound tourists and foreign people living in Vietnam. With the mission of making Vietnam become the “World’s Dental Tourism Destination”, VDT has self-planned 3 main responsibilities: connection, quality control and develop Vietnam destination brand. Along with dentists’ quality, the infrastructure of dental clinics is another concern of VDT. VDT applies an advanced and consistent system of dental technology across all clinic members in order to increase accuracy and save treatment time. Thank to this technology, patients’ information and treatment process have been recorded and secured.
Last but not least, foreign patients used dental services in Vietnam could enjoy attractive after-sales service. VDT offers group and global warranties for major treatments, and all dental members in the network are legally bound to future treatment services. Currently, patients living in US could take warranty and post-treatment inspection services in VDT’s partners in some cities. VDT also hopes to open this service in Australia soon. Other international patients could be sponsored entirely for the trip back to Vietnam if a situation falling into the warranty category occurs.
Currently, tourists have been still restricted to Vietnam due to COVID-19. With efforts to prevent the pandemic and above advantages, Vietnam could dream of becoming a global lead in Dental Tourism in near future.