Why Are People Considering Medical Tourism?

5tg42tWith the globalisation of all kinds of industries happening faster than you can blink, it’s no wonder that medicine and healthcare is joining the ranks. With costs raising in America, and the NHS in the UK only covering certain treatments with extensive waiting times to boot, patients in some of the richest countries in the world are finding themselves drawn to healthcare overseas. Whether you need a hip replacement or want to look into getting a breast enlargement abroad, it’s likely that there is a good reason as to why you have chosen to travel for the procedure. We’ve looked into a few of the most common reasons that people are starting to consider medical tourism and listed them below.

Cost

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The number-one reason that people are starting to go abroad for their medical procedures is simply because it’s cheaper. Depending on whether or not the patient has health insurance, and what procedure it is that they’re wanting, the savings can be anything from 15-85% compared to the cost in the USA or, in in the case of dental care, cosmetic surgery and some other procedures, the UK too. That percentage could be thousands, even with the cost of flights and accommodation considered.

To make matters better, the lower cost rarely means giving up on quality, either. In fact, quite often, you’ll receive care and treatment that is just as good as you would find at home, or possibly even better. The surgeries are performed by well-trained experts, and with the best technology available which may not even be available at home, and if you want the extra piece of mind, insurance and administration overseas are cheaper too, so you really can get the extra security for a fraction of the cost.

Quality/Availability

It’s quickly becoming common knowledge among those considering or having undertaken medical tourism that the procedures and experience as a whole is often of an equivalent or higher quality than it might be in their home countries. It’s becoming more commonplace that everything from the facilities, to the instrumentation, and even the customer service are exceeding that of a patient’s home country, with many countries pushing more and more money and resources into medical tourism as a whole.

International patients can find themselves being treated with impeccable care and might even find themselves in VIP waiting rooms, deluxe hospital suites and fully staffed recuperation resorts. With billions of pounds (or the equivalent currency) being poured into the healthcare system in countries such as India and Thailand, free travel to and from airports, low-cost meal plans for companions, and more accessible staff are something you can expect to find if you travel for your treatment.

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Speciality Treatments

It’s just an unfortunate fact that not all treatments and procedures are allowed in ever country. Whether it’s because of banned substances, or simply because the treatment is still within its clinical trials or has only just been accepted, sometimes a treatment can only be obtained by travelling overseas to get it.

The same can be said for insurance cover at home. Not all treatments – such as dentistry, cosmetic procedures and sometimes even hip replacements – are included in the health insurance that a person may have. It often becomes apparent that even a simple treatment could be cheaper overseas, even after paying for flights and accommodation.

With such perks to going overseas for a procedure, it’s no wonder that people are considering medical tourism. Whether it’s to save money, or seek out a treatment that isn’t available back home, medical tourism is a growing industry that is becoming more and more popular with every passing day.

Shorter Waiting Times

Waiting times in the UK, USA or Canada are notoriously long. With free healthcare (UK, Canada) it’s no wonder that the wait times are so long. But no matter the reason for the wait times, a long waiting period is fairly standard for some procedures and people are deciding that, understandably, they don’t want to wait.

Overseas, it’s often found that there’s no wait time at all for most procedures, and still significantly short waiting times on others. While it can cost the patient more in the case of a British or Canadian citizen who has access to free healthcare at home, there are plenty of patients willing to pay the costs to have the surgery done overseas just to avoid sitting in pain for what could be months, or even years in some cases.

The Opportunity to Travel

Simply put, a lot of people consider medical tourism because it gives them the opportunity to travel and see the world. While the central motivation is likely to be the surgery itself, the chance to visit a new location in an exotic country can be just as much of a reason to go to some. For those that might be worried about getting the surgery, doing something new and exciting can make it a more relaxing, but exciting experience.

Travelling abroad is a life changing experience, and travelling for surgery can make the whole thing just that bit more intense. A simple surgery can become a memorable experience for more than just the medical side of things. You could be sitting in the waiting room looking out at a mountain range in Mexico, or the beauty of Thailand’s cities from the doctor’s office. You’ll return home not only healthier, but with experiences beyond just going under the knife.

What’s more, some surgeons may very well let you recover while relaxing in a resort. What’s better than recovering from a life-changing surgery by the poolside, enjoying your holiday and not having to worry about home or work until you’ve recovered?

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