Medical tourism is an inclusive term that has a wide range of diverse activities. It is defined as the practice of traveling to another country to obtain a healthcare facility such as dental treatment, organ transplantation, medical check-ups, and many others. One motivation for engaging in medical tourism is different from one another. It includes imperatives such as improving quality, reducing costs, accessing treatments not available or legal in the home jurisdictions or for which the individual is not eligible. The convenience of such medical care provides an opportunity to patients who require immediate medical attention but is not available in the domestic healthcare infrastructure.
Types of Medical Tourism
There are two categories of Medical Tourism:
- International Medical Tourism: When people move to another country to receive a medical check-up from their own country to access a high level of quality care is International Medical Tourism. It can be bunded into two parts as Inbound medical tourism and Outbound medical tourism. In inbound medical tourism refers to people of outside origin entering a particular country for their medical purpose. In outbound refers to the people traveling from their origin to another country.
- Domestic Medical Tourism: When people travel from one country to another city or state to receive a high-quality medical check-up.
Reasons for Concern:
There are certain reasons why one goes abroad for medical tourism are stated below:
- Inadequate coordination within the industry – The medical tourism industry is global, and it involves many service providers, patients, and healthcare professionals. The industry lacks global and regional level regulations to create transparency and smooth functioning for patients and hospitals.
- Lack of systemic reporting of clinical outcomes- Verified and systemic clinical outcomes from the hospitals attract medical tourists, particularly hospitals in developing nations that are non-existent are unable to process outcomes on time, and patients’ health gets at risk.
- Exposure to new health and safety risks: There are always risks when related to medical interventions. When one is traveling for the medical tourists, as a medical tourist exposes patients to new risks.
- Threats to informational continuity of care: Currently, there are no systems that physicians can transfer the health record to medical tourists. International and unregulated transfers of health records also threaten the privacy of patients.
- Procedures might be illegal or untested- Some patients go abroad by their desire to access health procedures illegally in their home country due to their experimental objective.
Medical Tourism Success Factors
- Role of Medical Tourism Agency: Medical tourism agency is also known as Medical Facilitators, is an organization which is specialized in arranging foreign hospitals and treatment, lodging, and transportation during recuperation.
- Suppliers Rigorous Investment in the Industry: Increase demand for medical tourism has provoked competition among countries that promote themselves as medical tourism destinations. Now, they are focused on investing in their healthcare infrastructure. Asia is considered to provide the best healthcare facilities among the others.
- Increased Demand: Market of medical tourism has increased during the past few years. The disposable income in developed countries facilitates the purchasing of services in countries where prices are competitive.
Medical Tourism Industry is Growing at Astonishing Rate
Medical Tourism Industry is Growing
Astute Analytica studied the medical tourism industry and concluded the revenue generation of more than US$ 10 billion in the year 2019; as per the research firm, the global medical tourism market is growing at a CAGR of 12% during 2021-2027.
Safety precautions to take when going for Medical Tourism
- If one is planning to travel to another country for medical care, one should visit a medical provider 4-6 weeks before discussing general information for a healthy trip to another country to learn safety tips before and after the procedure.
- One should make sure to take care of his/her health before traveling, ensure that medical conditions are well controlled, and health providers should know about the medical care plan overseas.
- The important step is to check the qualification of healthcare providers who will be taking our procedure in another country. Foreign standards are different from one home country.
- One should have a written agreement with the healthcare facility to define what supplies and treatment will be covered during the entire trip.
- One should learn the native language of the country where they are going for the medical check-up so that they can communicate without any language problem.
- Always take copies of medical records that include labs and other studies related to the condition for which one is taking medical treatment.
- One should bring copies of prescriptions, a list of medicines we take, including their brand name, manufacturers, and how many dosages they take in a day.
- Before returning from the foreign country, should ensure to get all medical copies done.
One should keep in mind all these precautions and ensure a safe and healthy journey for medical care to the country.
Emma is a freelance writer and content strategist who offers ghostwriting, blogging and copywriting services. She has a keen interest in content marketing with a hold on social media management and market research. With over five years of experience writing for different domains, she is currently exploring a new area of interest in the “Medical Tourism Market.” Pitch her out to discuss interesting and niche healthcare domains that are blooming in integration with modern technologies.