How Medical Tourism Spread
Medical tourism is now more popular than ever, with over 50 countries named as a hot destination and thousands of tourists flocking new places to visit and get treated. The concept is actually not a new one, since people from the ancient times used to move out of their place of origin to visit well-known healers and places in other countries. Today, you can get the advantages of getting the best medical help, plus a vacation to boot.
About the Concept
The first documented occasion of medical tourism was thousands of years ago when Greek pilgrims moved all throughout the Mediterranean towards Epidauria, a minor territory in the Saronic Gulf. The place was considered as the home of Asklepios, the god of healing. Epidauria was visited by thousands of people each year, for cases like fever, bone problems, heart ailments, skin disease and many more. It was the first travel destination of medical tourism.
Over the years, sanitariums and spa towns were also built and became the early types of medical tourism. Patients visited the spa towns during the 1700s to get mineral water that is believed to boost health and treat problems like bronchitis, gout and liver conditions.
Several factors triggered the vast popularity of medical tourism. Primarily the increasing cost of health care had people asking if there were other places where they can receive the same kind of treatment without the huge expense. The next was the very long waiting periods and several requirements before they can be treated or even diagnosed. Modern medical tourism destinations provide patients only a fraction of the cost they expect to pay at their local hospital.
They can also enjoy other state-of-the-art and quality accommodations, and get their dream vacation at the same time. Some destinations are known for treating patients like royalty, so everything will be taken care of. You will be provided with a complete schedule of activities, so you do not waste your time waiting in line or running everywhere to get the needed documents for the procedure.
Medical tourism continued to spread as the cost of international travel became much cheaper. The technology and care standards in several countries, especially in Asia have improved significantly in the past decade, making the institutions highly competitive against the best in the United States. Medical tourists usually come from the United States, Japan, Canada, the United Kingdom, Saudi Arabia and other Middle Eastern countries, because individuals from these places usually have more money to spend when visiting third world countries.
Medical tourism is expected to grow ten times more from 2007 to 2017. In the United States alone, over 750,000 people traveled abroad to get treated in 2007. Experts calculated 1.5 million Americans traveling in 2008 to get treatment abroad. The United Kingdom currently advertises more about medical tourism compared to the United States. Canadians preferred the very fast medical waiting period in other destinations. Some procedures are even more convenient when done outside the United States or Europe.
Best Country When Medical Touring
There are several countries today competing to get accreditation from the top governing bodies, to hopefully become one of the best when it comes to providing medical tourism packages. There is only few nations you have to specially consider, though, since these have been very consistent in giving quality care, as well as the most attractive tourist spots this side of the globe. Here are some more details on what to expect and why they're the best.
India is situated in southern Asia with several countries surrounding its borders like Pakistan, Myanmar, China and Bangladesh. India has gone through a huge growth in terms of technology and medicine in recent years. It has also been very active in providing programs and aims to get more accreditation in its many hospitals to become one of the top medical tourist destinations in the world.
At present, there are 13 hospitals in the country that are accredited by the JCI. Some of the most common procedures that patients look for when visiting include cosmetic surgery, dental work, heart surgery and cancer treatment. The cost of care in India is considerably lower compared to other medical tourist spots. Patients can also communicate better with health care providers since majority of Indians are very good at speaking English. Visitors can enjoy their vacation more because of the India's rich culture and unique sights, sounds and attractions.
Fertility Tourism: Making Babies Abroad
A lot of people are going abroad to avail of fertility methods and procedures. Fertility tourism has become widely popular especially in countries like Thailand, Jordan and Malaysia. You can get the benefit of cutting costs, enjoying a great vacation and having a child you have always wanted. Procedures in developing countries are generally state-of-the-art, top quality and reliable. Here are some more tips and details about the approach.
What is Fertility Tourism?
Fertility tourism is also called reproductive tourism, described as the process of going to a different country to receive fertility treatments. The approach is considered a part of medical tourism. The main reasons that foreigners go to other countries to seek attention is the lower price offered by developing countries and legalities concerning the procedure in their home nation. The major procedures done include donor insemination and in-vitro fertilization. The term was also proposed to be "reproductive exile" to focus on the difficulties that infertile patients have to face, having to travel globally to receive treatment.
On IVF Procedures
Israel is the number one fertility tourism destination in the world for IVF or in-vitro fertilization techniques. It has the most number of fertility clinics per capita globally. America is preferred by several Europeans due to the bigger success rates and less stringent regulations. A lot of infertile patients go to Italy and Germany as well because of their lenient laws. Countries like America and Spain are quite restrictive when it comes to donor egg utilization as well as the number of eggs that can be fertilized.
Some of the risks include women having multiple pregnancy and the development of some complications because of the minimized restrictions on the number of eggs allowed to be implanted into the uterus at a single session.
Some individuals who wish to choose the sex of their child usually travel to the United States. A lot of people from the United Kingdom travel to the States, due to the PGD or pre-implantation genetic diagnosis, which is an extension of IVF for sex selection, which is not allowed in the United Kingdom. The UK only allows the procedure, if the patient needs to be screened for genetic problems, while other regulations in the United States are more lenient.
The United Kingdom and Sweden are short on sperm donors and only allow identified donors. The stock has dropped by one-third in the United Kingdom. Sweden, at present, has an eighteen-month waiting list for donor sperm. British women, as a result, go to Spain and Belgium for donor insemination. The laws have been changed, however, so Spain and Belgium now purchase donor sperm overseas to meet the growing demand.
Other Swedish visitors go to Denmark each year for insemination. Denmark allows single women to receive artificial insemination. In Canada, you are not allowed to pay donors to provide sperm or eggs. Canadian women can get sperm from the United States. Eggs are not allowed to be imported, however. Canadian women continue to go abroad to get such treatment.