If you can’t afford a medical procedure back home and want to get it cheaper elsewhere, or if a procedure is only available abroad, then going for medical tourism could be a good option. But you should know that there are many drawbacks to getting medical help in another country.
One of them is that regulations may differ greatly, and while you could find a good practitioner in another country, it will be more difficult than back home. There may also be some aspects of medical tourism that you didn’t consider. Let’s take a look at some of the pros and cons of going overseas for a medical procedure.
Pro – You can get Access to Better Practitioners
The US ranks very high in healthcare, but many other countries around the world have healthcare that’s just as good if not better. Some countries may also not have the best system overall but be highly specialized for certain procedures.
Countries like Turkey, for instance, are well known for their cutting-edge plastic surgery and hair transplant technology, while countries like India have some of the best heart surgeons in the world. So, going overseas could allow you to get access to better providers for a fraction of the cost.
Con – Recovering in a Foreign Country
One thing you have to be prepared for, however, is the challenges that come with recovering somewhere totally foreign. One of them is dealing with culture shock as you’re recovering, which could range from minor inconveniences to real trouble.
If you have to get a procedure that forces you to stay in a wheelchair, for instance, and the country has a poor record on accessibility, then you might have trouble doing very simple things like getting in and out of important buildings, getting transportation, or doing everyday shopping. So, this is something you’ll have to be very careful with.
Pro – Recovering in a Foreign Country
On the other hand, being in a nice locale while recovering from a minor procedure or one that allows you to get around comfortably could help you unwind and recover better. You could also time your procedure when you’re getting your vacation break. This would allow you to get your procedure and enjoy a nice trip at the same time.
If you want everything to go as smoothly as possible, however, you’ll need to prepare for special transportation. One of the things you should do would be to look at non-emergency medical transport air service. These services can appoint you with a nurse that will travel with you to your final destination. This will give you more peace of mind and ensure that you’ll have someone there in case of complications.
Con – Bad Surprises
A facility may look great on the surface and you may have heard about a wonderful doctor from someone you know, but you never know what the experience will be like until you’re there. You might get taken aback by the way you’re being treated by the staff, for instance, or find that you just don’t trust the doctor. You’ll then be faced with a very difficult decision to either get the procedure or call it off and lose money.
Medical tourism can work for some people but is not recommended for everyone. This is why you need to know what to expect, be well prepared, and be very careful about who you work with.