Best Emerging Medical Destinations for Tourists

Denise Chen - Jun 24, 2013
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A surge in global healthcare professionals, patient pool and technological enhancements has propelled the following countries as emerging medical tourism destinations. Low cost treatments and opportunities to tour the countryside and cities have also bolstered these countries' medical tourism.

They are also characterized by the availability of information, accessibility, affordability and superior infrastructure. As a result, citizens from abroad are seeking further treatment in the following destinations:

Israel

From cosmetic surgery to neurological treatments, Israel now offers different medical and healthcare solutions. Local practitioners are dedicated to pushing the country's medical tourism despite the ongoing security concerns and long lasting conflicts.

Although the country faces political crises, the economy is thriving. This is reflected in the low price of treatments. The medical experts also research and are more update on the latest information on cures and diseases than their colleagues in other countries.

The area around the Dead Sea is also famous for skin treatments. Visitors can use seawater and visit beauty spas to cure psoriasis and related troubles. The high atmospheric pressure in the area naturally heals cystic fibrosis patients as well.

South Korea

Another of the hot destinations for medical tourism. South Korea however is well known for discriminatory pricing policies where foreigners are sometimes charged double or triple the full- fee paid by locals.

The price disparity is too high for some foreign patients considering the difference between the highest and the lowest fees paid for highly sought- after procedures. However, Korea still attracts a steady stream of foreign patients. This is because of the unparalleled Korean traditional medicine, otorhinolaryngology, infertility treatment, dental care, ophthalmology, spinal treatment, joint/ rheumatism care, organ transplantation, cancer treatment and comprehensive health screening.

The most popular healthcare treatments among medical tourists include skin- lightening, facelifts, nose jobs and eyelid surgery.

Turkey

Turkey has been attracting medical tourists from the Middle East, Eurasia, the United States, the Balkans and Europe. The private health care system also aspires to be one of the strategic international health service providers and manufacturing centers.

The country also has the highest concentration of JCI- accredited medical institutions around the globe, second only to the United States. More than 34 medical institutions and hospitals have achieved the Joint Commission International accreditation. There is also an IVF Center at the German Hospital, Istanbul.

Puerto Rico

Even though Puerto Rico is new to medical and healthcare tourists, it offers travelers different benefits. This island is easily accessible and has medical expertise and healthcare infrastructure that rival those in Europe and the US.

Most of the well-trained physicians comply with privileging and credentialing requirements that resemble those in US hospitals. The charges, however, are higher than in other emerging medical tourism destinations.

India

India has a number of advantages for the medical tourist. These include compliance with international quality standards, availability of the latest medical technology and reduced cost. Foreigners will also not face language barriers in India.

The government is also taking necessary steps to provide the infrastructure to attract more medical tourists. Popular treatments include orthopedic surgery, eye surgery, cardiac bypass surgery, bone- transplant and alternative medicine.

Additionally, India is known for hip resurfacing, heart surgery and other sectors of advanced medicine. The local Ministry of Tourism also plans to extend the Market Development Assistance scheme to provide coverage to get the hospitals accredited and certified. Presently, Chennai is termed the healthcare and ultimate medical tourist destination in India.

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