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Friday, September 21st 2007

2:47 PM

booming Thailand

One of the countries experiencing a boom in their medical tourism industry is Thailand. In 2005, the Kasikorn Research Centre in Bangkok reported 1.28 million foreign visitors to the country. Why are all these foreigners trooping to Thailand? This country is fast becoming known as an Asian destination for medical procedures. Also, one of the most advanced medical profession in the region is Thailand. Many of their doctors undertake specialist training abroad, particularly the United States and Europe, making their knowledge and skills to be at par with their western counterparts.

Moreover, Thailand's attractive beaches and breathtaking views of the countryside ensures that a medical trip will also be a vacation. It also helps that Thailand's hospitals and clinics are world class. A lot of medical tourism companies have compiled competitive discount packages that include a flight, hotel, tour and surgical fees.

In Thailand, the costs of plastic surgery procedures could go as low as less than half of the price in the US. A simple nose job that could cost $5000-6000 in the US can go as low as $2500 in Thailand. Also, hospitals that cater to foreigners are becoming popular in Thailand too. In these hospitals, patients are ensured of getting First-Class care.

If you're thinking of having a medical procedure done in Thailand, it's still important that the facility and its staff have the certifications and training. Also, ask your doctor about follow-up care to better plan you visit.

Source: Medical tourism booms in Thailand in Body-Philosophy
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Friday, September 7th 2007

3:25 PM

new travel trend

Leisure and business are not the only reasons why people travel nowadays. A lot of countries are steadily seeing an increase in visiting foreigners and the reasons go beyond great tourist spots. Travel agencies and mass media has invented the terms medical tourism, medical travel, health tourism, and other similar terms to refer to the growing practice of traveling to other countries to obtain medical services and procedures.

Among these popular medical procedures are cosmetic surgeries, cardiac surgeries, dental surgeries, and joint replacement surgeries. More often, leisure is also added to the agenda but the primary reasons for travel are medical ones.

Although medical tourism is a relatively new trend, the practice of traveling to other places for health reasons dates back to thousands of years ago. Spa towns are the earliest known medical travel destinations. Epidauria, a territory in the Saronic Gulf and a sanctuary of the healing God Askleipos, was visited by Greek pilgrims from all over the Mediterranean.

Why do people feel the need to travel just to obtain these medical procedures? High costs of health care in some countries may be considered the primary reason for going to some countries where these procedures are cheaper. Advancements in certain medical procedures or equipments in more developed countries, even thought costly, may also be another reason. Among the more populare medical travel destinations are Brunei, Cuba, Colombia, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Israel, Jordan, Lithuania, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, South Africa, Thailand, UAE. Countries like Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Costa Rica, Mexico, and Turkey are top destinations for plastic surgeries.

With the increasing trend of traveling for medical and health reason, the destination options are also getting more diverse. This medical travelogue aims to give more information by featuring specific destinations and procedures. If going on a vacation takes a lot of planning, traveling for any medical procedure should take a lot more. Which country would best offer a rhinoplasty? Which country should you go to to get that needed cancer treatment? Does the country you've chosen also offer tourist spots you can easily visit? Where can you get references for medical centers in a particular country? For how long should you stay in the county, taking into consideration your recovery period? This and a lot more are questions on a medical traveler's mind.

Join me as we travel around the world...

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