Medical Travel Is Here To Stay
I’m not someone who supports outsourcing most things to other countries. It’s not that I’m against other countries sharing the wealth, so to speak. My reasons are twofold.
One, I see many jobs performed in America going to other places, and I see how it’s hurt our economy. American companies create products elsewhere, then bring them back here to sell for the same money as before, but make bigger profits because they can pay foreign workers less.
Two, because the work isn’t any better than what Americans can do, and is sometimes more deficient and doesn’t fully follow the rules. Two things I can point to are Dell customer service and the medical billing company that threatened to post the private records of American citizens in a dispute with the American company that had contracted them to handle the billing. We may have HIPAA privacy laws in the United States, but there’s nothing the American government could have done to this Indian company.
With that said, I have to change my tune when it comes to having medical services done in other countries to save money. It’s hard to complain against an individual or company deciding that it makes sense to try to save money on major health care procedures for their employees. If a company can spend only $20,000 to send one of their employees to India or Mexico for a heart procedure that would cost $100,000 in the states at a minimum, while knowing that the medical facilities are high quality, then that’s a smart and intelligent move that frankly I can’t go against.
Last year I did research for an article concerning Mexico medical travel and that research showed that not only could patients save anywhere between 100% and 500% for medical procedures, including elective surgeries (laser eye surgery, plastic surgery, etc), but there were full medical packages at resort style hospital / hotels that fully integrated all the costs to save even more money.
The same goes for India, where the preponderance of very well American-trained physicians have set up extensive and specialized medical practices that offer nothing but the best as far as medical procedures are concerned. And the costs can be even less than doing them in Mexico, though getting there might cost a little bit more. But there are more physicians in India, so the concept of having to wait for quality paid medical care is nonexistent.
This is important news to know about as health care costs keep going up. Not only employers, but some insurance companies are realizing that they need to find ways to keep costs down since, at some point, there has to be a cap on the cost of insurance premiums. To see another perspective on this, check out this CNN Money story on the same subject.