The Medical tourism has been a tremendous success in the past decade. The reasons for its popularity includes, but not limited to increased patient awareness, sky rocketing medical costs, the reluctance of insurance companies to cover many procedures and an increase in un insured and under insured patients. The internet age has certainly helped its cause. Today, the patients are better informed, competent of doing more research and are not just simply willing to accept whatever life throws at them.

The learned patient today is ready explore non-traditional options and ready to question the authority. The choices often described in various terms like surgery abroad, health care out sourcing or simply medical tourism. The ability to quickly share the large data of information over internet has helped the patient to get real expert opinions and scientific options. There has been so much noise about medical tourism in the news media lately. Many are simply promotional materials disguised as news, some exciting success stories, some not so successful stories and even some tragic ones. This leaves one with the question- Is medical tourism really safe? “The answer is not a very easy one. You have various groups trying to safeguard their own interests. Patients trying to get cheap surgery overseas regardless of the risk, domestic surgeons and hospitals trying to keep its cash paying customers and some health tourism facilitators trying to just fill their business by whatever means necessary!” says Mr. Bob Talasila, the president of World Medical and Surgical LLC – an American health care professional managed medical tourism company. He says business and healthcare ethics is a tough combination and points out that cheapest is not always the best.

Let us be honest here. Surgery always comes with the risks. Some of the risks include Infection, anesthesia, bleeding and improper surgical techniques. There are several very good JCI accredited hospitals abroad in countries like India, Mexico, Thailand and Costa Rica. These hospitals have worked hard to gain JCI accreditation and now work even harder to keep it. They usually have a dedicated international department and staffs are well versed in English. At the same time there are some hospitals in some South American countries, which have a bed capacity of 6-15 beds. These facilities cannot be called hospitals by any stretch of imagination. Just compare these with the quality JCI accredited hospitals in India that boast 600 to 1500 beds. Is it really possible to provide best post surgical care in such tiny facilities? You draw your own conclusion. The situation is complicated by the fact that some patients blatantly disregard these basic facts just to save a few dollars over a safer hospital. Some of these surgeons might not even have proper training to ensure optimal post surgical outcome. Unfortunately, some of these patients will end up getting post surgical infections (especially in plastic surgery patients), UN desirable post surgical outcomes and will end up in Emergency Rooms and/or might require a costly revision surgery.

Having said that, the post surgical infections are not really rare in America either. How often do we hear about post surgical Staph infections here? Patient also shares a big responsibility in preventing post surgical infections by following wound care recommendations. Some patients try to rush back home against the surgeon’s recommendations and some would prematurely stop the antibiotic use. In reality how much control does the hospital has over an infection, once the patient has left their care? It is understood that medical tourism is about saving money. But at the same time one should not lose sight of the bigger picture- the post surgical outcome and safety.

Author's Bio: 

World Medical and Surgical is America's most trusted Medical Tourism company facilitating Medical Travel programs for North Americans seeking affordable surgery abroad.