Medical Tourism: Emerging Phenomenon in Health Care Industry - 2008 Report

Many patients are traveling great distances to obtain quality care at lower cost


Medical Tourism: Consumers in Search of ValueThe impact of dramatically rising U.S. health care costs is prompting increasing numbers of consumers to consider outbound medical tourism as a viable care option. In 2007, an estimated 750,000 Americans traveled abroad for medical care; this number is anticipated to increase to six million by 2010. Concurrently, inbound medical tourism and medical tourism across state lines continue to present opportunities for specialty hubs offering treatments unavailable elsewhere in the world or in a community setting.

"Medical Tourism: Consumers in Search of Value," a report from the Deloitte Center for Health Solutions, part of Deloitte LLP, examines the growth of medical tourism: the hot spots for outbound and inbound programs and factors important to the attractiveness of both.

Deloitte’s 2008 Survey of Health Care Consumers explored the consumer’s outlook on medical tourism. The survey discovered that medical tourism is set to explode in growth over the next three to five years.

As patients are exposed to greater financial burdens resulting from higher co-payments and price transparency efforts, they are likely to seek low-cost treatment alternatives such as medical tourism. This, in turn, has major implications for health care providers, health plans, employers, regulators and policymakers.

Series on “Disruptive Innovations” in Health Care

This paper is part of a series of reports by the Deloitte Center for Health Solutions about “disruptive innovations” in health care.  Learn more about the series

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