Monday, May 21, 2007

Medical tourism

Sometimes, Sightseeing Is a Look at Your X-Rays -From The New York Times:
For decades, Americans have known they could obtain cheaper health care abroad, and have slipped off to Mexico for small surgeries or Canada for prescription drugs. But more and more people now recognize foreign hospitals can deliver not only cheap but also high-quality health care, and are considering medical tourism even for serious health problems. ...

Now, the United States health establishment may be coming to the same realization I did. To be sure, insurers’ worries about quality control and liability risk at foreign hospitals may still keep them from embracing medical tourism. But with spending on health care in America topping $2 trillion, baby boomers aging and the pool of uninsured rising above 43 million, insurers, smaller employers and individual Americans without insurance are looking at overseas care as an alternative for costly treatments, even for complex procedures like heart surgery and procedures excluded from coverage in the United States. Already, more than 150,000 people travel abroad each year for health care.

According to “Patients Without Borders: Everybody’s Guide to Affordable, World-Class Medical Tourism,” a new book by Josef Woodman, overseas care can trim 60 to 80 percent, or more, off the price of major surgeries...

I first heard of interational medical tourism while visiting a hospital in Havana. How times change. Or don't, according to Michael Moore. Sicko!

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