One of the major problems facing the growth of the Medical Tourism industry is that insurance for overseas medical facilities is not available. These expenses have to be borne by the individual, sometimes making it difficult to indulge in such travel.
Post Operative Care: Since the patient gets treated on foreign land, there is no or very little post-operative care that is been given to him/her. The onus then is on the patient and the doctors in his native country to take care of complications arising, side effects and emergency care that would be required.
Scars, sunburns can be caused after vacationing post operation. Long flights could cause breathing problems and increase sensitivity. Thus post-operative care is an important part of any Medical Tourism package.
The biggest risk involved with any medical treatment is the chances of the procedure going kaput. This risk takes a larger issue if it’s an overseas patient. Apart from extending the stay and increasing expenses, the patient is also at loss to seek aid from the laws of the country. Ignorance of legal restrictions and laws abiding the medical fraternity can be of great concern and inconvenience.
In recent times this concern is addressed by hospitals by taking corrective measures. Good and reputed hospitals provide with corrective care or reimburse damages if there is a medical mishap or malpractice and the circumstances are not as were desired.
Cosmetic surgeons also offer free revisions in some countries. However, one should understand that as of now there is no International body to govern such mishaps. Thus, the medical tourist must realize that if the surgery results in disfigurement, disability, or death then the legal justice is not going to be simple as in ones native country.
The Medical Tourism industry has also led to generation of all kinds of Medical Malpractices. Many hospitals claiming that they have US or UK trained doctors does not validate their performance. Such doctors could not be properly trained or would not have received adequate practice in procedures.
Some hospitals have low standards offered through attractive packaging. There have been instances of medical mishaps as in disfigurement and blotched skin due to surgeries in unaccredited hospitals by uncertified doctors. Countries with such surgeons and hospital generally have weak malpractice laws and punishment is not harsh.
People in the US also opine that no Third World country can equal to their quality standards and technology.
The profits raked by the Medical Tourism industry are making it into a viable business option. Many large hospitals and institutions attract speciality doctors, leaving poor patients with fewer options.
The local patient population also does not get the deserved care, as the hospital personnel are busy concentrating on foreign patients. This leaves the local public at a disadvantage and the economical balance is jeopardized.
Medical tourism has been an option for developed country citizens to travel to third world countries where the weather is tropical. Such countries also have cetrtain infectious diseases which could be carreid by the medical tourist to his country. This happens due to absence of such diseases in industrialised nations and thus having no natural immunity for the same.
Patients going back from countries like India, South Africa, Malaysia, Costa Rica, Thailand get easily affected by diseases common in such countries. The list of such diseases would include Hepatitis A, dengue, HIV, typhoid, jaundice, amoebic dysentery, influenza, etc.
These diseases due to their rarity in developed countries might not be diagnosed properly or misdiagnosed.