Can you really travel to a foreign destination for a vacation, and get quality medical attention and surgery at the same time? That’s the question many people raise when the subject of medical tourism comes up. The skepticism is understandable, given the images many people have of some of the locations associated with medical tourism –India,Thailand,Singapore,Latin America and Eastern Europe. But there are indeed many advantages medical tourism can offer that make it well worth considering for some people. Of course the quality of medical care should always be the primary consideration, and the fact is there are first-rate medical facilities and physicians, surgeons, and other health care professionals in all the places mentioned above, as in many other areas of the world, such as Germany, the UK,Turkey,Israel, and Cyprus. Given the fact that the quality of medical care can be excellent, and the cost often well less than half of prices in your own country, medical tourism can indeed make great sense. The New England Journal of Medicine recently reported the case of a self-employed carpenter and cardiac patient who faced charges ranging from $40,000 to $200,000 vs. less than $7,000 in India for a cardiac procedure. The carpenter had the surgery in New Delhi and the operation was a complete success.
Another benefit of medical tourism is that you can get treatments that have been proven effective and used in parts of the world for years but have not yet, or only recently been approved for use in your country. The TOPS™ (Total Posterior Solution) procedure, performed in association with spinal decompression surgery, is an example of a procedure that has been used extensively in Europe. TOPS is an alternative to spinal fusion back surgery that preserves the full range of motion between the individual vertebral segments, unlike spinal fusion.
So go ahead and consider medical tourism. For some patients and medical conditions, it could be the ticket to quality, low cost healthcare.