Medical tourism has reformed the traditional health-care industry
and has set a new benchmark for every country around the globe. More
travelers than ever before are now travelling abroad to get high quality
medical treatments for less cost, which includes treatments such as
general surgery, transplant surgery, cancer treatment, stem cell
therapies, dental implant, facial implant, and liposuction, just to name
a few. Both developed and developing countries are considering investing
their infrastructures in this infant industry to stay on top of the
Medical tourism as a niche market has emerged from the rapid growth
of what has become an industry, where people travel often long distances
to overseas countries to obtain medical, dental and surgical care while
simultaneously being holidaymakers, in a more conventional sense .
This new trend of medical tourism is different from the traditional
model. In the traditional model, patients travelled from less developed
nations towards more developed nations where treatment quality would be
much advance and significantly better. However, in the current medical
tourism model, there is a flow of patients in both directions, i.e. from
developed to developing and vice-versa [2,3].
The rise in medical tourism has opened up opportunities for many
businesses. A report by Deloitte Center for Health Solutions estimates
that by 2017, about 15.8 million US patients will receive care outside
of the country, resulting in a potential "opportunity cost" to
US clinics of about $373 billion . Among others there are few
specialized medical travel agents, like MedRetreat, can choose from a
menu of 183 medical procedures from seven different countries: India,
Thailand, Malaysia, Brazil, Argentina, Turkey, and South Africa. Medical
Tours International has sent more than 1300 patients in 2005 to abroad
and has got medical personnel to assist patients with trip planning and
travel decisions. Another example would be PlanetHospital, California
based, that screens providers to ensure quality of care and assists in
connecting patients to international health care providers. They have
various steps in initial screening process: whether the patient is in
proper condition to travel, choosing appropriate physician and
destination, digitalize records and send them to physicians in
destination country, arrangement of conference call between potential
patient and physician from foreign country. Also, nearly two-thirds of
physicians who work for PlanetHospital have either fellowships with
medical societies in the US or UK, or are certified for a particular
specialty by a medical board .
The purpose of my study is to explore the interest of US travelers
in medical tourism. Students from a western university participated in
data collection. The study will offer insights into factors that people
might consider when addressing their medical needs in the future. The
results could be useful to businesses that are either directly or
indirectly involved with this industry, such as insurance companies,
credit card companies, travel agencies, hotels, food and beverage
companies, medical facilities and services, and spas. Moreover, in this
era of globalized health care, businesses can survive by understanding
the needs of this market, and by incorporating the demands of potential
2. Literature Review
2.1. Medical Tourism
In order to grasp the notion of "medical tourism",
"health tourism", or "wellness tourism", it is
essential to comprehend the definition and the context under which these
terms are used interchangeably. "Wellness tourism is the sum of all
the relationships and phenomena resulting from a journey and residence
by people whose main motive is to preserve or promote their health. They
[people] stay in a specialized hotel which provides the appropriate
professional know-how and individual care. They require a comprehensive
service package comprising physical fitness/beauty care, healthy
nutrition/diet, relaxation/ meditation and mental
activity/education" . According to Bookman and Bookman ,
"the sale of high-tech medical care to foreigners has come to be
called medical or health tourism". Tabacchi defines health tourism
as "any kind of travel to make yourself or a member of your family
healthier" . Although some writes have used the term
"medical tourism" to incorporate all forms of health-related
tourism  it seems to be more useful to distinguish "medical
tourism" as one involving specific medical interventions .
Although there are various definitions and terms used to define the
act of travelling abroad for medical purposes, but for this research a
more holistic definition will be applied. "Medical tourism is the
act of travelling abroad [across international borders] to obtain
various types of health and wellness treatments" . This
definition will provide a comprehensible approach of the term medical
A study conducted in Swiss hotel groups revealed that guests
visiting any particular country for medical reasons should be approached
differently based on their expectations of visit, and their
understanding of the terms "wellness" and "cure".
So, if hotels around the world want to be ahead of competition, then
they have to customize their marketing approach based which segment of
tourists they are planning to capture: those who come for medical
treatments or those who are travelling for pure relaxation . Also, it
implies that health policy makers must value these two distinct groups
and work with tourism service providers to address the expectations of
customers. Moreover, hotelier should design rooms, facilities and
service environment to assure customer satisfaction of the highest level
because it will help promote business and customers will recommend the
hotel to others which will promote reputation and spread good
Another revolution in the traditional hotels segments is brought by
"focused factories". According to Devon M. Herrick ,
"these are specialty clinics and hospitals where tasks and
procedures have been streamlines for the highest efficiency". In
other words, developing countries have built and continuing on expanding
hotels that can serve as medical clinics, so that patients feel that
they are vacationing.
The exceeding demand of various products and services that may or
may not be produced in a country has resulted in strong political and
economic collaborations of nations all around the world. Today more and
more countries are signing trade agreements to take advantage of lower
labor and material costs, fewer tariffs and quotas, and reduced
barriers. Keith Pollard, director of British Web site Treatment Abroad,
told CNN that "he doesn't foresee a boom in medical tourism
within the EU [European Union], he believes the new legislation will
encourage patients to seek treatment abroad and help create a European
health care market" .
The developing countries can take advantage of rising outsourcing
opportunities in fields such as entertainment, telemedicine, distance
learning, and travel services. Two major factors that are contributing
towards these fields are raising income in developed countries and
relatively low prices in developing countries . It means as the
income rises, people will have more disposable income and would like to
purchase goods and services from countries that offer at relatively
competitive prices. In other words, there is an inverse relationship
between rises in income in developed countries that facilitates higher
demand in developing countries . According to Bookman and Bookman,
"a country or specific facility may be able to achieve competitive
advantage in the marketplace by leveraging various non-clinical factors,
including proximity to target patients and the ease of travel between
two locations" .
The convenience of travelling from one point to another can be
promoted by top-notch infrastructure of developing countries. Usually
when people think of India's local transportation system, they
imagine jam-packed buses, poorly constructed roads, bullock carts and
horse carriages, and hand-pulled rickshaws. While India is at tempting
to improve its transportation infrastructure, there are other countries
such as Republic of South Korea, Taiwan, and Singapore who have
successfully incorporated new infrastructure, new technology and
developed human resources . However John Connell, 2005, says that
India has upgraded its technology, absorbed western medical protocols
and emphasized low costs and prompt attention to become most important
global destination. He goes about saying that while such situations have
now radically changed but the perception of inadequacy remains .
2.2. Benefits of Medical Tourism
Cost is one of the foremost determinants for patients seeking care
from hospitals in foreign countries. Often, surgeries in developing
countries will cost just a fraction of what one might pay in the USA or
the UK . Along with cost savings, a patient can expect
state-of-the-art technology that is same or even better than western
standards . As an example, India is one of the developing countries
that have "capitalizing on its low costs and highly trained doctors
to appeal to these medical tourists" . There are various reasons
due to which foreign hospitals charge less for treatments: lower labor
costs, little to no third party involvement, transparency in package
pricing, limited collaborations between health care facilities and
physicians, and lower costs of malpractice litigations . Also, price
differential wars have resulted in immense competition among developing
countries. India has significantly succeeded in capturing this segment
of tourist because it has developed the capability to offer "bypass
operations for about a sixth of cost in Malaysia" . Along with
the cost of treatments, medical tourists are seeking out for countries
that have significantly less currency fluctuations. After
Thailand's currency collapse in 1997, the Thai government focused
its resources to attract medical tourist, especially for plastic
surgery, to yield higher revenues . When medical tourism was
flourishing as an industry, dollar was relatively weak to other foreign
currencies. However, the absolute differential in medical prices has
been so large that adverse exchange rates have not been a major
consideration for medical tourists from the US .
Although cost is main the determinant of decision making to travel
aboard, but having to wait for longer periods to get a treatment in
developed countries is making this transition happen quickly. Even for
the countries where government health-care system is in place, like
Britain and Canada, patients are reconsidering to get their treatments
from their home countries. Also, it gives the opportunity for developed
countries to "clear their backlog by sending patients to foreign
countries for expedient care, at low cost, without expanding local
capacity" . In 2005, the waiting times for hip and knee
replacement were 21.8 and 28.3 weeks, respectively, in British Columbia,
Canada, in contrast to service within a few days of referral in most
medical tourism destinations .
Moreover, cost can be of significant importance to those who do not
have insurance. According to Sharon Reier (2004), about 38 percent of
the uninsured and one-quarter of those with insurance would travel
abroad for care only if savings exceeds $10,000. A research conducted by
Oxford Analytica discovered that more than 45 million US citizens do not
have health coverage and those who do they are not very satisfied with
health-care services [20,21].
Another rationale for Americans to leave their comfort zone and
travel to foreign countries is quality of health care. Many potential
patients might think that cultural differences, mainly language and
background, will make it difficult for them to communicate with their
foreign health care service providers. However, the cultural barriers
are reduced by having educated and English speaking staff physicians and
nurses. American Medical Association (AMA) introduced set of guidelines
for medical tourism that included proper follow-up care, letting the
patients know about their legal rights, informed risks for surgical
procedures, and information on long flights and vacation activities
People are realizing that they can save money by combining health
needs along with vacation desires. Several companies are emerging that
provide bundled packages which include air fare costs, accommodations
from airport to hotels, cost of surgery, room and board expenses in
hotels, and local sight-seeing costs . Often times, the surgeries
are not very intrusive and has fast recovery time. "The principal
hospital group in Singapore, Raffles, arranges airport transfers, books
relatives into hotels and helps to arrange local tours" . This
shows that tourism industry along with needs of patients from developing
countries resulted in creation of medical tourism.
The issue of privacy makes medical tourism more popular because no
one prefers to be on the headlines of media. "Some medical
procedures, such as sex changes, have become small but significant parts
of medical tourism, especially in Thailand, where recuperation and the
consolidation of a new identity may be better experienced at a distance
from standard daily life" . Furthermore, it means that unlike in
US, patients personal medical records cannot be viewed by a third party
Some procedures are not approved by the US government that makes
developing countries an attractive opportunity to acquire such
treatments . Lee goes about explaining the importance of
governmental support to enhance tourism industry especially for
developing countries . For example, Singapore Tourism Board (STB)
launched two marketing campaigns: "Singapore Medicine" in
2003 and "Uniquely Singapore" in 2005 that anticipated $30
billion earnings and attracting 17 million visitors by the year 2015.
Another type of procedure that might not be offered in countries like
Britain and US is abortion. However, countries such as India have fewer
regulations that are seen as attractive options for couples who would
prefer to get an abortion. Also, procedure such as "stem cell
therapy for heart failure, unobtainable by many patients in
industrialized countries, is available in the medical tourism
marketplace" . Some patients leave US to get treatments that
are not approved by medical specialty societies, academic health
centers, and the Food and Drug Administration. For example, a shark
cartilage is not scientifically accepted cancer treatment in US However,
patients travel elsewhere to get this treatment in hopes of getting
better through any means .
People use credit cards for it provides a better means to fulfill
immediate demands and needs that can be repaid later. It generates more
flexibility for travelers to carry a credit card that acts as an
international currency. According to Weaver , credit card companies
like Visa is promoting the universal use of its cards with the
catchphrase "It's everywhere you want to be". The use of
credit cards provides the travelers with less concerns about arranging
the money instantaneously, and hence give them more freedom and mobility
to use the credit cards as needed in near future .
There have been various types of questions arising from different
fields of study, and all of them focus on the privatization of health
care that is being offered to medical tourist in developing countries
compared to the type of service offered to poor people of that country.
One researcher wrote that "ethics is not only a question of making
up one's mind and following one's conviction. It is also a
question of listening to other persons' perspectives and opinions,
and perhaps convincing others if you are sure about your own
opinions" . India has been subject of question about health
services offered to their citizens who have little to no access to basic
health care and have high infant and maternal mortality rates .
The quality of health care is very important determinant right
after price because people have this perception that if something is
offered of lower cost, so they might not receive better quality. In
order to address this problem, developing countries are hiring
physicians that have internationally respected credentials as well as
training from developed countries like US, Australia, Canada or Europe.
At present there are more than 120 hospitals abroad that are accredited
by the Joint Commission International (JCI), and 20 hospitals that are
accredited by the International Standards Organization (ISO). More over,
some foreign hospitals are managed by affiliated US health care
facilities like Cleveland Clinic and Johns Hopkins International .
JCI-accredited Wockhardt hospitals offer open heart surgeries for $8500
in India, as compared to $100,000 in the US and $28,000 in the UK .
According to Jesse McKinley , Americans have growing appetite for
nips and tucks, and it was evident from 12 million procedures performed
2.3. Costs of Medical Tourism
People are still pondering over usefulness and benefits of medical
tourism because they do not have enough knowledge about this industry.
So, various consulting and nonprofit organizations are making an attempt
to market their services for those who are seeking to travel across
borders for health reasons . The quality of these services will set
apart one provider from another, and it will also give them a
competitive advantage over one another. Also, in some of the extreme
forms of such travel, like where patients require euthanasia are
discouraged due to high expected risks in procedures .
There is a lack of communication between institutes from both
developing and developed countries. As a result, if a person seeks
medical treatment in developing country like India, then there is no way
that US insurance company could communicate and arrange payment for the
treatment considering that the procedure is covered in the US . A
lack of insurance portability discourages prospective clients to obtain
treatment in developing country . Among other procedures, cosmetic
surgeries are not covered by insurance. As an example, a face-lift in
Costa Rica costs about a third of that in the US, rather less in South
Africa . On the other hand, since 2006, there have been attempts made
by the West Virginia legislation to provide financial rebates to state
employees who seek health care at medical tourism destinations
"including first-class flights for patients and a companion, plus
recovery in a four-star hotel and other incentives like bonuses and sick
leave" [12,18]. On the other hand, some insurance companies
consider the shift of patients to get medical treatment abroad as an
incentive because they will have to pay less. For example, United Group
Programs in Boca Raton, FL, is saving its employers 50 percent of health
care costs by cutting employee contributions to zero . According to
Josef Woodman , "several insurance companies have begun to
pilot programs together for medical tourism. One of the first was
Companion Global HealthCare, which is affiliated with BlueCross
BlueShield of South Carolina. United Healthcare, Aetna, WellPoint and
Health Net of California now have medical travel and medical tourism
packages. They're mostly being covered through employers. It's
very early to tell what the acceptance level is going to be, but those
plans are in place" .
The lenient terms of litigation and poor justice system in
developing countries makes it difficult for patients to earn their
rights of undertaking legal proceedings . One major problem with poor
malpractice laws is lack of communication between the physicians from
developing countries with that of developed countries. It has resulted
in physicians from highly litigious nations to not endorse offshore
treatments to their patients as they are afraid of putting their
reputation at stake. Furthermore, consequences of adverse outcomes, even
death in some cases, would be difficult to fight for in foreign courts
as the patients of their families are asked "the claims would have
to be adjudicated in a foreign court" . There is hesitation
from the perspective of a physician and a patient, which is why the
medical tourism industry has not matured much.
There is also a possibility that the patient was not aware about
some pre-existing health problems which were brought to surface either
prior to or during treatment in foreign hospital. This could result in
breach of contract from physicians' point-of-view because he or she
was not aware about the condition .
Sometimes hindrances of obtaining follow-up care discourage
patients to travel. If the patient undergoes a less intrusive surgery
then chances of recovering soon increases, but if the surgery or
treatment is complicated then there are more complicacies involved:
mental, physical, and financial considerations .
Media has adequate power to stir mystification in the minds of
travelers especially when they are considering going abroad for medical
treatment or vacation. For example in 2003 when SARS outbreak appeared,
media exaggerated on the disease that resulted in negative impacts on
global tourism . The 9/11 tragedy the Muslim countries had lost
tourist because the fear grew in the minds of travelers. On February 14,
2005 Gulfnews.com reported that a manager of one of Malaysian hospitals
has said "since 9/11 people started looking to the Eastern world
for holidays and we are trying to capture a fraction of these
people". Americans have seen enough of turbulence in foreign
countries which has resulted in low confidence levels to travel abroad
for medical treatments, like terrorists' assaults that killed many
foreigners in New Delhi, drug wars in Mexico, and antigovernment
demonstrations that stranded thousands of tourists at the Bangkok
The differences in cultural backgrounds play an important role in
tourists' decision making process. According to Law , media
plays an important role in altering destination of choice more for
Asians as opposed to Westerners. It becomes primary concern of tourism
planners to address this topic prior to gaining confidence of Asian
An exploratory study was conducted to understand the factors that
affect the choice of destination for medical tourism: tools used for
researching information on medical tourism, sources to seek medical
advice, factors considered important for seeking medical care outside of
the US, and choice of destination country, which is explained in details
under Data Analysis section. Data was collected using a survey method
from a total of one hundred and ninety-four students. The participants
were recruited from various disciplines at a western University. They
were provided with a brief introduction of the term "medical
tourism" prior to handing out the survey.
The participants answered a 3 page survey sharing their opinions
and beliefs on medical tourism. A classroom setting was chosen to
administer the data collection process. A researcher was available to
respondents for any questions.
The first few questions focused on respondent's profile and
remaining were centered on various factors impacting their decisions for
travelling abroad for medical tourism. The questions were adopted from
previous studies exploring this topic [10,30].
4. Data Analysis
4.1. Respondent's Profile
Figure 1(a) shows that my sample consisted of 46% males and 54%
females. The sample was close to equal distribution between males and
females. Hence, there is a good probability to get the point-of-view
from both males and females and their understanding of medical tourism.
Figure 1(b) shows the age groups of the sample: 63% were 21-23
years; 16% were 24-26 years; 15% were 18-20; and 6% were 27 and above.
Figure 1(c) depicts the ethnicity of sample: 49% were Asian/Asian
American; 22% were Caucasian; 20% Hispanic/Latino; 4% were Middle
Eastern; 3% were Hawaiian/other Pacific Islander; and 2% were African
American. This shows that diverse ethnicities were represented in the
Figure 1(d) shows that 88% of people travelled outside the US,
while 12% didn't. In other words, majority of the sample have
visited to place outside the US, and they might have fairly good
experience of travelling abroad.
Figure 1(e) illustrates the average number of trips taken in a
year: 69.6% took 1-2 trips; 25.8% didn't take any trip; 4.1% took
3-5 trips; and 0.5% took 5 or more trips. It shows that about 70
percent, or two-thirds of our sample, have taken at least one to five
trips in this current year. Only 26 percent approximately did not travel
this year at all. It is an interesting observation to see that even
those who did not travel in this current had some valuable inputs
regarding various factors and opinions on medical tourism.
4.2. Tools Used for Researching Information on Medical Tourism
Figure 2 illustrates on tools that the sample would use to research
information on medical tourism: 73% preferred online research; 10%
relied on family physician's opinion; 8% relied on family and
friends; 6% relied on testimonial of hospitals abroad; and 1% each for
printed brochures, videos providing tours, and television reports. The
chart below shows that majority, seventy-three percent, picked online
research as a very important tool. It could be because that the present
generations of people are more technology savvy than older generations.
Their second pick was getting recommendation from their primary
physician in the US to decide which destination is better suited for
their health needs. Although, this tool was about one-seventh of the
previous one, but undoubted my sample seems to be concerned about the
risks involved in foreign destination, so they preferred to seek advice
from someone they trust. The third tool that they chose as important was
asking friends and family if anyone has gotten any procedures done. The
word-of-mouth seems like one of the important sources for seeking
4.3. Sources to Seek Medical Advice
In Figure 3 the sample picked the sources that they would consider
to seek medical advice: 51.5% chose hospital-patients relation
department abroad; 19.6% chose medical travel agent; 19.6% chose online
research; 4.6% chose personal doctor(s) advice; 4.1% preferred to
contact through family and friends; and 0.5% chose study abroad
programs. So, clearly the top pick was hospital-patient relations
department in the foreign country followed by online research and
medical travel agent. This chart could be helpful to businesses who are
interested in learning where their perspective target market would seek
advice for medical traveling.
4.4. Factors Considered Important for Seeking Medical Care Outside
Figure 4 tells us which factors the respondents seem to consider
for seeking medical care outside the US: 65% focused on success rate for
my-type-of-procedure performed; 17% looked at number of
my-type-of-procedure performed; 10% focused on complication rate for
my-type-of-procedure performed; 7% focused on the country of
destination; and 1% looked for relative ease of travel. The respondents
were critically thinking about which factor(s) would affect them and it
is reflected in their responses.
4.5. Choice of Destination
Figure 5 shows the top choices of destination for travelling abroad
for medical purposes were: Japan, South Korea, Singapore, Mexico, and
India. The respondents picked the countries that they would consider if
they had to make the decision of travelling for medical purposes.
Frequencies were analyzed for this figure. Japan was ranked the highest
by 82 respondents, 21% of the sample; South Korea was chosen by 40
respondents, 10% of the sample; Singapore was chosen by 31 respondents,
8% of the sample; Mexico was chosen by 24, 6% of the sample; and India
was chosen by 22 respondents, 6% of the sample.
4.6. Factors Considered before Choosing Destination Outside the US
Figure 6 shows the factors from most important being five, to least
important being one. As it is displayed on the chart, medical facilities
and services, local primary doctor's recommendation, and
governmental policies and laws were among the most important choices.
The two choices that were relatively important were hotels and
food/beverage quality and general tourism supply.
One of the major limitations of this study is its sample. Since,
all of the respondents were students from various academic disciplines,
so there is a probability that some of them did not have prior knowledge
of the term "medical tourism". As a result, it is possible
that they could not represent their opinions accurately. Although a
brief introduction of medical tourism was mentioned prior to handing out
the surveys, but it might not have addressed all the potential questions
that respondents might have had at that time.
Another limitation of this study is its sample size. A total of 194
respondents participated in this study. It would be incorrect to relate
the opinions delivered by the respondents to the total population. Even
though the numbers of participants were fewer, but their opinions were
well thought, and they clearly demonstrated critical thinking before
making decision to travel abroad for medical purposes. Besides, the
respondents could be potential tourists, but have not yet considered
decisions of this nature. So, even though they might comprehend the term
'medical tourism,' but there is no assurance that the sample
would consider the options chosen had they been a medical tourist
before. In other words, if the sample becomes immediate customers of
medical tourism, they might focus on a variety of different factors,
which they might not have considered for this study.
Medical tourism is a growing phenomenon that will continue to
spread its charm on the health-care industry. One of the major reasons
that will desire patients to travel abroad, especially from a developed
country to a developing country would be the skyrocketing costs of
medical treatments. Additionally, there are various other factors that
will contribute to the flow of medical tourism in developing countries:
opportunity to vacation, privacy and anonymity, fewer waiting lines, and
some procedures that are not offered in developed countries. It will be
fascinating to observe the trend set down by the next generation of
medical tourist and the factors that they might consider more important
than others. For example, online research was one of the major tools
used for searching information on medical tourism, and it might continue
to grow importance by the potential medical patients who will consider
travelling in near future.
Despite the opportunities and growth of medical tourism industry,
there are few limitations that have resulted in comprehension of medical
travelers. Some of them are lack of primary knowledge, health insurance
companies does not cover all costs, weak malpractice laws in developing
countries, hindrances to obtain follow-up care, and outbreak of disease
and rebellious attacks. Besides, if the medical procedure needs to be
taken care of immediately, then some of these limitations might not
apply in those cases. If the medical treatment is very intrusive, then
cost might be the main determinant of the visit; however, if less
intrusive medical procedure needs to be done then some of the
limitations will be brought to surface. In other words, types of
procedures will determine the tourists' willingness of focusing
more in support of medical tourism or not.
Additionally, medical tourism needs to be explored further to learn
about its significance and importance, and any changes in future demand.
It would be helpful if additional research was conducted on this topic,
as it would give an opportunity to share and learn from other's
insights. Most prominently it will be interesting to explore perceptions
of actual medical tourists. For example, which factors they considered
more important than others, and also the reasoning behind their choices.
Other important aspect would be their experiences with follow-up care.
Although learning a topic provides an opportunity to critically think
about related issues, but making the actual decision needs more
preparation. Moreover, it will be exciting to compare and contrast
between the choices made by actual medical tourists as opposed to
potential medical tourist. It would give an in-depth understanding of
the rationale that goes behind decision making process.
This study mainly focused on potential medical tourists and factors
that they considered important before travelling out of the US. Many
factors were explored to get a glimpse of what could potentially be the
medical tourism market: sources to seek medical advice, important
considerations before seeking medical care outside the US, choice of
destination country, considerations before choosing the destination
outside the US, and tools used for researching information on medical
tourism. The outcomes from the above questions will give a good
understanding of the shift in demand among current and potential medical
tourists. The results could be beneficial for businesses that are
operating in health-care and tourism related industries, by
incorporating the needs of the market.
Received April 13th, 2011; revised May 29th, 2011; accepted June
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Harsimran Gill, Neha Singh
California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, USA. Email:
Figure 1. (a) Gender; (b) age group; (c) ethnicity; (d)
travelled outside US; (e) average travel in a year.
21-23 years 63%
24-26 years 16%
18-20 years 15%
African American 2%
0 trip 25.8%
1-2 trip 69.6%
3-5 trip 4.1%
5+ trip 0.5%
Note: Table made from pie chart.
Figure 2. Preferences of background research.
Tools Used to Research Information on Number of
Medical Tourism Respondents
Online research 73%
Ask for your primary physician's opinions 10%
Ask family and friends 8%
Testimonials from hospitals abroad 6%
Printed brochures 1%
Videos providing tours 1%
Television reports 1%
Note: Table made from bar graph.
Figure 3. Sources to seek medical advice.
Relations Department 51.5%
& friends 4.1%
Note: Table made from pie chart.
Figure 4. Factors considered important for seeking medical
care outside the US.
rate for my-type-of-
of Travel 1%
Note: Table made from pie chart.
Figure 5. Choice of destination country.
Choice of Destination Number of
C a inula 11
Costa Rica 8
Hong Kong 5
Note: Table made from bar graph.
Figure 6. Factors considered before choosing destination
outside the US.
Factors to be considered
before Choosing Destination
outside the US Average of Responses
Medical facilities and 4.60
Local primary 4.31
Govt, policies and 4.10
Hotels and 3.22
General tourism 3.06
Note: Table made from bar graph.