Skip to comments.More Americans going global for health care: Medical Tourism
Posted on 02/16/2010 7:38:29 AM PST by Badabing Badablonde
WASHINGTON Critics of health care reform often point to desperate Canadians who head south for surgery to escape waiting lists. But a trend closer to home points the opposite direction: Americans heading overseas to escape the high cost of U.S. care.
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Once a cottage industry, medical tourism may be on the cusp of major expansion as governments from India to Singapore invest in state-of-the-art hospitals, vying for a global market.
Uninsured patients currently make up the bulk of Americans venturing abroad. But Vequist's group has studied at least 50 companies that say they are open to helping employees go overseas for cheaper care. A Northern California casino and a Maine supermarket chain now offer the option to employees.
They're interested in sending employees abroad if they can get similar- or better-quality care at a better price, Vequist said.
Vequist says Texas companies are particularly well-positioned for taking advantage of the savings in medical tourism because many have affiliates in Mexico, already the destination of 50 percent of Texas' medical tourists.
(Excerpt) Read more at chron.com ...
Like Sen Dodd & Murtha did?
Yeah, thought so.
No HIPAA, no EMTALA, no Medicaid, no unions, nothing but doctors and nurses. No passport needed either.
Please don’t wander into my ER with complications from your
foreign treatment. No local doctor wants to deal with the headache.
I have taken care of patients (er victims) of medical tourism when they return to the states. They get what they pay for. And a lot more (diseases that keep on giving)
I suspect that they are going to buy an organ if they are going all the way to Asia or India.
It's your body to do with as you wish unless you want to sell an organ. The medical establishment in America has spoken.
Uh, no. The companies are trying to cut costs and going where the American trial lawyer isn't.
If my employer insisted that I go abroad to get my medical coverage that I was promised, I'd wonder how long it would be before they would replace me for even bothering to actually file on my medical insurance policy.
“No local doctor wants to deal with the headache.”
Nice. You should be asking “why are people going to India when they can get the care they need right here?”
Then you should go to your collections department and look at the trends there. Then you should look at the difference in rates you charge customers with insurance, and those without.
You should do this BEFORE everyone but illegal immigrants and medicaid patients stop coming to your ER.
Why go abroad? State of the art hosptials, U.S.-trained physicians, and pennies on the dollar costs by comparison to U.S. prices.
Please. We don’t get a penny from over 30% of the people we see thanks to EMTALA. Another 50% are people on Medicaid we get 20 cents on the dollar from them. I make the same hourly rate I made in 1990 when I left the military. Save your lecture.
“I have taken care of patients (er victims) of medical tourism when they return to the states. They get what they pay for. And a lot more (diseases that keep on giving)”
How many go overseas because they are cheap, and how many go overseas because they will be destitute as a result of availing themselves of your services?
Does it even bother you that you cannot provide the treatment they need at a price they can afford?
A missionary friend I know had dental surgey done in South Africa, where he is stationed. Cost in USA: $4500. Cost in S Africa: $400. The facilities are all private and first class. He said that SA has government health care free for everyone. It sucks. A private for pay health care system has grown up along side the public one that is really really good, and cheap.
I’ve seen several news magazine TV shows cover the topic. People are getting top grade treatment, at much, much less (like $5,000 for something that would cost $50,000 in the States). It’s no suprise that the U.S. medical establishemnt is threatened by this. But hey, every industry that’s watched their jobs go overseas went through the same thing.
You’re barking up the wrong tree pal. I give those who cannot pay free care every day. When seeing a patient, I do not ask for insurance or how they will pay.
Do you feel bad having jumped to conclusions? Or do you feel bad begrudging me compensation for what I do, the risks I take and the hours I work?
BTW, many of the uninsured I care for for free both smoke and drink. They could buy insurance for the cost of their habits. There are things I would like to do but cannot because I can’t afford them.
And in the same vein, those I care for for free are often the ones that complain the most about the care (the service in the hospital is not good enough for them) and expect the most. Try it from my side for a while, and you will change your tune.
“I make the same hourly rate I made in 1990 when I left the military. Save your lecture.”
Why do you think this is? Doesn’t it bother you?
What if you could make a lot more doing another job somewhere else, would you do it?
I’m not lecturing - you just aren’t very inquisitive about this - and are blaming your customers who are voting with their feet and their wallets.
I saw no such prosperity in the parts of India or Thailand that I visited (I certainly didn't see that much of either country,however).To the contrary,I saw breathtaking poverty...particularly in India.
“Youre barking up the wrong tree pal. I give those who cannot pay free care every day.”
I’m not barking.
“When seeing a patient, I do not ask for insurance or how they will pay.”
And why not? Cost should come into the equation somewhere, that is why folks are going overseas. It’s not that they WANT to do it - they mostly have no choice, and often no idea what the costs are for your services other than it’s out of their reach.
You need to be more curious why the folks that have *some* money can’t come to you.
Anyone can come and receive my services, and those who cannot afford it know exactly how - show up in the ED and they will receive free treatment up to and including million dollar hospitalizations. And gripe about the care the entire time.
I have enough curiosity, thank you. I’m not even curious why you seem to have such a grudge against the medical providers in this country.
“People are getting top grade treatment, at much, much less (like $5,000 for something that would cost $50,000 in the States). “
I am not qualified to determine if the services overseas are worth it. However, if I needed treatment for something, and had some assets, but no insurance, I would have to consider going overseas, because the US medical system would take everything from me if I did not go overseas.
Lots of US doctors are going to have to accept a lot less in salary if this continues. I don’t want that to happen - but when doctors don’t seem to care when potential paying customers walk out the door, I am left shaking my head “why don’t they care?”
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