Mdical Vacations Reduce Medical Costs
According to the National Coalition on Health Care, more than 500,000 Americans traveled abroad to receive medical and dental work in 2006.” The most obvious reason Americans are taking medical vacations is affordability. For example, the difference in the cost of dental fillings between the US and many other parts of the world is quite substantial. Some of the more frequently visited dental tourism destinations include India and Thailand, but others (like Argentina, Israel, and Hungary) are quickly closing ground.
India’s “economic boom” might be relatively recent, but its domination in the world of medical tourism dates back several decades. Thailand, too, has become widely known for its medical tourism facilities like Bumrungrad Hospital in Bangkok—the first JCI facility to approve accreditation in Asia. Obviously the cost of a $1,000+, 20-hour flight doesn’t justify a $35 dental filling or two, but the cost savings stretch across many medical procedures. Maybe you need more extensive dental work or surgery in a totally different part of the body. And then there’s also the fact that you can combine quality health care with an “exotic” vacation. If you’re tired of Disneyland and National Parks, this might be the perfect arrangement for you.
Medical and Dental Tourism Destinations Bring Down Costs for Patients
The current growth in the popularity of medical vacations has become more pronounced because of the rising costs of health care in the United States. Americans are finding themselves unable to afford quality health care; and in some cases, to afford any health care at all. According to popular medical tourism company, Healthbase, one can enjoy savings approaching 80% if he or she conducts the right type of research before jumping on a plane.
80% Savings for Certain Dental Tourism Destinations
What do “80% savings” look like in your wallet? Well, try this out. A metal-free dental bridge that costs $5,500 in the US costs only $500 in certain dental tourism destinations. It means a heart-valve replacement surgery costing more than $200,000 in the United States may cost less than $10,000 (including the “round-trip airfare and a brief vacation package” in India). So while you probably won’t be able to justify a medical vacation for minor procedures, when you stray into costlier treatments (or elective ones), traveling abroad begins to make a lot of sense. However, make sure you ask the right types of questions before taking the plunge. The global medical and dental tourism industries are still not 100% regulated, so certain precautions are necessary for maximum safety.