Is medical tourism a thing? Turns out it is and business is booming. Looking beyond American boarders to find healthcare systems in other countries that are equally as good — if not better — than what you get at home for a fraction of the price, and countries that specialize in areas ranging from hip replacements to fertility to plastic surgery.
Each year, more and more foreigners look to international options for medical procedures. It’s not hard to see why if you visit MedicalTourism.com to see price estimates on various surgeries. In 2015 the cost of a hip replacement in the U.S. averaged just over $40,000. In Colombia, the same procedure averages only a little over $8,000. From Asia to Latin America, read on to find out more about five of the best options available to you as a medical tourist.
Costa Rica: The World Health Organization ranks Costa Rica’s healthcare system slightly above that of the U.S. This achievement is the result of a large government investment in the health sector. The influx of foreigners in Costa Rica has also been a big incentive for private hospitals to open and expand their operations.
Malaysia: has gained fame as a medical-tourism destination because its healthcare is among the world’s best — and cheapest. Malaysia has both public and private healthcare with medical expertise equal to or better than that in most Western countries.
Mexico: Many individual hospitals are excellent. In fact, Mexico’s combination of well-trained doctors, modern hospitals, low prices, and proximity to the U.S. has made it a popular medical-tourism destination for U.S. residents. Many Mexican towns along the U.S./Mexico border have thriving dental and medical practices, thanks to their many U.S. patients.
Thailand: is ranked among the world’s 50 best healthcare systems by the World Health Organization.
Other popular destinations: Canada, Iran, Brazil
Author: Carrie Mitchell
Carrie Mitchell is the founder and content director of L’Aventure Travel. She has traveled to over 40 countries, is the host of the Suitcase Sojourn Podcast, and author of the children’s travel book “To Be We: The Adventures of Owen and Lucy”. A writer, producer, entrepreneur, and communications strategist, Carrie is always seeking to learn from people and places around the world.