Surgical Tourism

Surgery isn’t the first or even the last thing that comes to mind when you think tourism and vice versa. As misnomered as it may sound, surgical tourism is what is happening in the health care industry today. Surgical tourism, also known as medical tourism, medical travel, health travel and health tourism, is traveling abroad for surgery.

So why would someone choose to go overseas for surgery?

The number one reason is because they can get huge discounts when compared to the price tags on surgeries at home. Surgical tourists claim to have saved from 50% to over 90%. Another reason revolves around the long wait-lists in countries like Canada and UK with public health care system. Some go for elective surgeries not covered by insurance.

Does low cost mean poor quality?

Check out pictures of some of the international hospitals catering to foreign patients and you will notice how immaculate their 5-star hotel type facilities are. Their accreditations include those like JCI, JCAHO and ISO. Patients vouch for the personalized service they get. It’s not uncommon to see world-renowned surgeons at these international hospitals playing finger-magic behind the latest billion-dollar robotic machines.

So exactly how is such a miracle possible?

Well, that’s because in some countries like India, Thailand, Singapore, Turkey, Mexico, Costa Rica, Panama and others, the cost of labor when compared to the US, UK or Canada is lower. Plus, administrative costs and malpractice costs are also lower. These are the countries that are hot surgical tourism destinations.

Some of the surgeries that patients go overseas for…

Range from breast augmentation to Birmingham hip resurfacing surgery, and from lap band to triple cardiac bypass surgery. And it’s not just surgeries that people seek. Some go for therapeutic treatments and others for cancer treatments. Restorative and reparative treatments like LASIK are common and so are preventive check-ups and simple dental fix-ups.

Where is tourism in the picture?

While the primary motivation for most surgical tourists is affordable surgery, the opportunity to visit exotic destinations is an additional draw for some. You can plan to have a holiday during your visit to the foreign country before the surgery if your health permits or after the surgery if your surgeon permits.

How do I go about arranging my surgery abroad?

Getting surgery overseas is not even closely related to getting surgery at your local hospital but it can save you a ton of money. However, it involves careful research and planning. Begin by collecting more information about the trend of surgical tourism. Read what others are saying about it. Educate yourself about the surgery desired. Do your due diligence in researching the various international hospitals and surgeons at the surgical destination you are interested in. Compare quotes from various providers and finalize one.

Many people find it useful to work with a surgical tourism provider that helps them with all the logistics of surgical tourism. Surgical tourism providers connect you with the hospital of your choice while providing many other related valuable services like detailed information about various procedures, detailed hospital profiles and surgeon profiles, medical records transfer, free surgery quote, pre- and post-consultation with the overseas hospital, feedback and testimonials from previous patients, medical and dental loan financing, passport and visa, airport pick-up and drop-off, hospital escort, tickets, travel insurance, hotel booking, tourism services in the destination country, etc.

You can learn more about the growing trend of surgical tourism, international healthcare facilities and surgeons, and the details of the surgical tourism process by logging on to http://www.healthbase.com

About the Author: The author works for Healthbase, a Boston-based award-winning medical tourism facilitator connecting patients, self-insured businesses, insurance companies, third party administrators and others looking for affordable healthcare options to leading hospitals around the world for low cost high quality surgical care in various categories including bariatric (lap band, gastric bypass), orthopedic (hip resurfacing, hip replacement, total knee replacement), cardiac (bypass surgery, valve replacement, aneurysm repair), spinal (spine fusion surgery, laminectomy), dental (orthognathic surgery, dental implants, crowns, bridges), cosmetic (face lift, liposuction, breast augmentation), laparoscopic, etc. To learn more, call 1-888-691-4584, email info.hb @ healthbase.com or visit http://www.healthbase.com