Medical Tourism Facts: Australia

Medical tourism is not just for Americans. Many Australian patients are choosing to receive medical care and elective procedures outside of their home country. The high cost of medical work in Australia is driving these patients to seek care elsewhere, despite the added costs of travel and accommodation.

Here are some of the most current facts about Australian medical tourism:

  • Most Australian medical tourists elect to receive their treatments and procedures in Asian countries, including Thailand, India, Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea, and Turkey.
  • The most common types of procedures that Australian medical tourists travel to receive are cosmetic surgery and dental work.
  • Often, these cosmetic procedures for Australian medical tourists include breast augmentations, facelifts, and tummy-tucks.
  • Non-cosmetic procedures are on the rise for Australian medical tourists. These include surgeries for spine, neck, and shoulder as well as knee and hip replacements and fertility treatments.
  • In many countries abroad, the standard of care is much higher than patients’ home countries.
  • Patients can also enjoy rest and recovery in resort-style care facilities.
  • Roughly 15,000 Australian patients travel abroad for medical tourism each year.
  • Australians who travel for cosmetic procedures spend roughly $300 million per year on treatments, and this is still while saving up to 80% on the cost of treatments.
  • Australian Medicare is unlikely to cover any overseas medical treatment that is not deemed an emergency.
  • Engaging in medical tourism does carry risks that patients need to be aware of.
  • Standard travel insurance will, in most cases, not provide any coverage for costs related to medical complications.
  • Medical tourism insurance is the only coverage that is guaranteed to provide assistance with the cost of complications.

Get a quote.

Medical Tourism in Thailand

Thailand tops the list of medical tourism destinations.

In 2017, an estimated 2.4 million international patients visited Thai hospitals for medical care. BBC Travel reported that the Thai medical tourism industry is growing at a rate of 16% each year. The Asian country has dominated the market due to three key factors: low cost of medical treatments, high quality of treatments, and high level of hospitality.

The most obvious reason many international patients choose Thailand as their medical tourism destination is because they are able to save on average 50% to 70% on the cost of treatments. For example, a knee replacement that would cost $30,000 in the U.S. will cost around $11,500 in Thailand. An MRI scan that would be $2,611 in the U.S. costs roughly $190 if performed in Thailand.

Most international patients travel to Thailand seeking elective treatments such as cosmetic surgery or dental work, which are the top two markets. Other specialties in Thailand include orthopedics, cardiology, IVF/reproductive medicine, and spine surgery. International patients are also attracted to medical care in Thailand because of the relatively short wait lists for procedures, something that can be difficult to find in countries like the U.S. or the U.K.

The second reason that patients traveling to receive medical care choose Thailand is the country’s strong healthcare system, with a strong presence of private hospitals. These private hospitals know that Thailand is a popular medical tourism destination, and they do all that they can to cater to international visitors. The hospitals’ physicians are highly trained, and over 500 Thai doctors are American Board Certified. There are 64 facilities that have received a JCI accreditation. The JCI, or Joint Commission International, is an organization that encourages medical excellence in countries outside the U.S.

Finally, Thailand is an attractive medical tourism destination because it is also an attractive tourism destination. The country is known for its hospitality, and its medical centers are no exception. Patients will receive excellent bedside service in Thailand, and it is a beautiful place in which to rest and recover from operations. The most popular cities for medical tourism that have the best medical facilities are Bangkok and Phuket.

If a patient does experience unforeseen complications while recovering from a medical procedure in Thailand or any foreign country – or even after returning home – international travel medical insurance and complications coverage can assist in providing relief from additional expenses that were not planned for.

Get a Quote.

Medical Tourism in Latin America

Medical tourism is the practice of visiting a foreign country to receive healthcare, medical treatments, or surgery with the benefit of lower costs than can be found in the U.S. It is estimated that as many as 23 million Americans are expected to engage in medical tourism in the near future, and half of these people are likely to visit countries in Central and South America for their treatments.

Why Latin America?

The benefits of visiting Latin America for medical treatments are nearly unbelievable. The most obvious benefit is the low cost for services, but this is matched by the high quality of medical facilities, practitioners, and treatments. Many Latin American countries are ideal for American medical tourism because of their close proximity to the U.S. Because it is such a popular destination for medical tourism, Latin America’s medical facilities have to use cutting edge equipment and technology in order to meet the high standards of foreign medical tourists and keep their spot as a leading location for medical tourism.

Market Data Forecast reported in 2016 that the Latin American medical tourism market was worth USD 4.33 billion, and this is expected to grow at 18.9% CAGR to reach USD 10.30 billion by 2021.

Top services performed for medical tourists in Latin America include cancer treatments, chronic disease care, dental treatments, heart and bariatric surgeries, orthopedic treatments, cosmetic and plastic surgeries, rehabilitation programs, and eye care. These treatments and surgeries can see a 30% to 70% cut in medical expenses when compared to those in North America.

Some of the top countries for medical tourism in Latin America are Mexico, Costa Rica, and Brazil.

Mexico

It is estimated that medical tourists visiting Mexico can save 40% to 60% on their medical bills. Many doctors and dentists in Mexico received training in the U.S. and are bilingual, making communication with English speaking patients easy and stress-free. In addition, several private American hospital chains own and run hospitals in Mexico, and there are two facilities in the country that are gold members of the Medical Tourism Association. The rate of savings combined with Mexico’s very close proximity to the neighboring U.S. make it an excellent option for medical tourism.

Costa Rica

Over 50,000 foreign patients travel to Costa Rica each year for healthcare, and a majority of that number are Americans. These medical tourists save between 45% and 65% on their procedures. Costa Rica’s healthcare system was actually ranked slightly above that of the U.S. by the World Health Organization. Due to the high quality of services, around 15% of all international tourists to Costa Rica come specially to receive medical care.

Brazil

Brazil’s advanced healthcare system makes it a popular destination for medical tourism. With over 6,500 hospitals, Brazil has one of the largest healthcare systems in the world. It currently has over 60 facilities and programs accredited by the JCI (Joint Commission International), an organization that supports medical excellence in countries outside the U.S. Medical tourists can expect to save 30% to 70% on services performed at Brazilian institutions and will receive top quality care.

For someone visiting a foreign country specifically to benefit from less expensive medical treatment, it would be a disaster to be hit with unexpected charges related to the trip or procedure. Our medical tourism insurance provides coverage against any unforeseen circumstances that a patient traveling abroad may experience.

Get a Quote.

Medical Tourism in the Philippines

Getting Medical Tourism Insurance for Philippines

People from the United States, United Kingdom, and other developed countries traveling to developing nations such as the Philippines in the search for less expensive health care has become an emerging trend these days. You may be looking for medical tourism insurance for the Philippines. With medical costs only expected to rise in the developed world, medical tourism in Asia, South America, Africa, and even some Eastern European countries like the Czech Republic, Poland, Hungary, and Bulgaria is all set to become a flourishing industry.

According to the medical tourism statistics of 2011, around 2.65 million patients from the United Kingdom have either traveled or are planning to travel abroad for emergency surgical interventions. This would mean that around 1 out of 20 Britons would have a medical surgery outside their country this year. This is not surprising if one sees some of the cost comparisons. A knee surgery (arthroscopy) which costs around £2200 in the UK costs around £583 in Poland (amount saved 74%) , tooth whitening which costs around £315 in the UK costs around £97 in India (amount saved 69%), hip replacement which costs around £9500 in the UK costs around £2900 in Tunisia (amount saved 69%).

Laser eye surgery (Lasik) which costs around £1100 in the UK costs around £458 in Hungary (amount saved 58%), dentures (full set, acrylic) which costs around £565 in the UK costs around £156 in Latvia (amount saved 72%), varicose vein surgery which costs around £1985 in the UK costs around £461 in Poland (amount saved 77%), cataract removal which costs around £2175 in the UK costs around £490 in Bulgaria (amount saved 77%), and heart surgery (coronary bypass) which costs around £13,650 cost around £4721 in India (amount saved 71%).

The cost of health care in the United States in general is exorbitant compared to the rest of the world.

A routine visit to the hospital in the United States costs around $3180 compared to the $1050 in the rest of the world and having a baby delivered costs around $7400 compared to the around $3400 in the rest of the world. Around 16% (around 45 million) of the American population is uninsured. Although the cost of surgeries in the United States is less expensive compared to the United Kingdom, Americans from a lower economic background cannot afford expensive surgeries.

 

Medical Tourism India Facts

Medical Tourism in India

Medical Tourism has been one of the fastest growing sectors in India. By 2015, it is expected to become an approximately 9500-crore industry in the country. Every year, around 150,000 patients from the developed world come to India for affordable healthcare. According to the current estimates, the cost of treatment is just around 10% of the cost compared to the United States and the United Kingdom. Some of the least expensive treatments foreigners flock to India are for hip replacement, alternative medicine, eye surgery, cardiac bypass, and bone marrow transplant.

Other than the low costs and quality healthcare, medical tourists from the English-speaking countries like the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom prefer travelling to India, as they wouldn’t have to face the language barriers like they would face in countries like China and South American countries, where English isn’t spoken much. The Indian government has also shown a lot of interest in formulating policies to encourage medical tourism in the country.

Today, there is a lot of competition between the private and the public sector to make India one of the future hubs of medical tourism.  A lot of private hospitals, over the years, have invested in the latest, world-class medical technology to woo medical tourists from all over the world.

To convince the medical community and patients from the United States, who have always been a bit skeptical about the healthcare standard in India, most top hospitals have acquired the Joint Commission International (JCI) accreditation or are in the process of applying. Some of the Indian hospitals with JCI accreditation are the Apollo Hospitals in Chennai, Bangalore, Hyderabad, and Calcutta; the Asian Heart Institute in Mumbai; and the Fortis Escorts Heart Institute in New Delhi.

Ancient India had already been the hub of alternative medicine in yoga and meditation centers across the country. However, due to constant foreign invasion, British colonialism, and the advancement of Western clinical medicine, alternative Indian medicine lost its popularity. However, things have now changed with the advent of medical tourism, and people visit India for both Western medicine and alternative Indian medicine.

Medical Tourism in India Costs

According to a recent survey, around 10,000 medical tourists from the United Kingdom have been visiting India over the last few years for cosmetic surgeries like facelifts and tummy tucks. A tummy tuck, which costs around £6500 in the United Kingdom, costs just around £1500 pounds (inclusive of a vacation package) in India. While a surgery for mitral valve prolapse costs around $200,000 in the United Kingdom and around $40,000 in the United States, in India it costs around $7,000.

THE RISE OF MEDICAL TOURISM IN INDIA

The rise of medical tourism in India has also created a lot of job opportunities in the country, as the industry requires a lot of planning and processes to be implemented. With a lot of high-tech Indian hospitals entering the fray, fresh Indian graduates can earn up to Rs. 15,000 per month. Medical tourism is also seen as a future growth opportunity for insurance companies, which would create even more jobs. Judging by the zeal shown by both hospitals and the government, the future of medical tourism looks a lot brighter than it was a few years back.