Seeking treatment for a medical condition at an international hospital has become easier. In fact, the experience may be even better than at one’s local hospital. Here are several benefits to visiting a hospital overseas.
1. Shorter wait times – many international hospitals don’t have wait times to perform surgical procedures. Once one’s condition and treatment plan has been evaluated, surgery can be perform almost immediately.
2. See specialists more quickly – there are few barriers to seeing specialists at international hospitals. In fact, some hospitals may only have a small fee to meet with a specialists to evaluate your condition and treatment options.
3. Lower costs – based on most comparisons, costs at many high quality international hospitals are less than costs in the U.S. Costs in the U.S. for many treatments ranging from orthopedic surgery (hip replacement and knee replacement to angioplasty and heart value replacement) may be higher by a factor of 5 compared to international hospitals in Southeast Asia, India, or Latin America.
4. Equal or better quality – there has been an rapid increase in accreditations by international organizations such as the Joint Commission International of hospitals around the world, meaning the standards at certified hospitals are very high. In addition, the facilities may be more modern and the equipment newer and more advanced.
5. Evaluation of all options before surgery – while surgery may be the first option at hospitals in one’s home country, many international hospitals aren’t driven to perform surgery. Doctors may evaluate all options with you first including natural healing methods.
6. Better post treatment care for less cost – while surgery can be done almost immediately at many international hospitals, it is the post surgery and recovery time that will determine the success of the operation. Because costs are lower for inpatient rooms at international hospitals, you may be able to afford a longer stay at the hospital to recover from your procedure. Further, many hospitals recommend nearby resorts and spas where recovery can be done in a peaceful and nurturing environment.
7. Nicer inpatient rooms – because of the lower costs and newer facilities, inpatient rooms may be much nicer and offer private accommodation.
8. Hospitals take care of travel arrangements – many international hospitals are located in established tourist hubs, so travel to the hospital is streamlined. Hospitals have international patient teams that will assist with travel arrangements and visa requirements taking the stress out of the travel portion of the visit. Some of the larger hospitals may even have a counter at the airport.
9. High levels of efficiency – if a hospital in your home country seems slow, many international hospitals, by contrast, pride themselves in operational efficiency so that the patient’s experience is pleasant. For example, a hospital in Malaysia has a pharmacy in every department so that prescriptions are filled hassle free.
10. Combine holiday and medical travel – it is becoming popular for people to combine travel plans and even book vacations around a hospital visit. Many outpatient procedures can be done together with holiday travel rather easily. Having a comprehensive health screening while on holiday is one of the first ways people become familiar with medical tourism.