Meet Laura Moser, Medical Tourist

Travel Blog  •  Michael Yessis  •  12.08.05 | 11:26 PM ET

The Rise and Fall of a 10th Grade Social Climber author Laura Moser has an interesting two-part story in Slate this week about her experience as a medical tourist in Beijing. Her decision to seek treatment abroad isn’t unusual.

Last year, the medical-tourism business grossed around $40 billion, and the numbers are getting bigger every day. A recent McKinsey study predicts that medical tourism in India, worth $333 million last year, will bring in $2.3 billion by 2012. Compare price tags and you’ll understand why. A bone-marrow transplant costs $2.5 million in the United States. Doctors in India can do it for $26,000. Heart-bypass surgery runs $60,000 to $150,000 in this country. In Asia, the average cost is $10,000. Other less-serious procedures—tummy tucks, face lifts, breast implants, LASIK eye surgery, even MRIs and dental work—can also be had at a fraction of they cost here.

The hospitals abroad offering these bargains insist that the savings come at no sacrifice to quality. They lure potential patients with airport pick-ups, private nurses, frequent-flier miles, and all-inclusive post-op resort stays. Why go to the hospital in Boston if you can stay in a five-star hotel in Thailand? A record 1 million tourists traveled to that country last year for health care. Using Thailand’s success as a model, countries like India, Malaysia, Singapore, and the Philippines have established governmental committees to promote medical tourism.

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8 Comments for Meet Laura Moser, Medical Tourist

Shyam Varan Nath 12.11.05 | 2:57 AM ET

Nice information, once the medical tourism industry is past the quality control phase, then it will really fly. In the West specially USA, patients want to know what is the fall back if something goes wrong.

Shyam V Nath
Founder, Medical Excursions

Shyam Varan Nath 12.12.05 | 4:01 PM ET

I have been to some of the hospitals myself in India and Bangkok, Thailand. These hospitals are indeed world class and have several physicians trained in USA or UK.
Shyam V Nath
Founder, Medical Excursions

randolph g jue 12.13.05 | 12:28 PM ET

would like to send you a natural chinese remedy called ging loc tong. left message at slate.

Casey Kittrell 12.13.05 | 10:59 PM ET

I wrote about medical tourism in October 2004, though I wasn’t lucky (or unlucky) enough to experience it first-hand. Gadling re-posted the story, which covers some of the same ground as Moser and others, though my piece was written primarily for travel agents considering how to sell it.

R C Pillai 12.25.05 | 1:10 AM ET

In India Dental tourism is picking up . Especially in the state of kerala. It is worth visiting the site to see a world class facility.

Shyam Varan Nath 07.17.06 | 3:26 PM ET

Keeping the potential of Medical Tousirm in India, the corporate US investors are looking at hospitals in India. Met a company based in New York thati s investing heavily in Apollo Hospitals of India, in wake of Medical Tourism.

Shyam Varan Nath

lasik eye surgery 02.22.08 | 4:40 PM ET

Great article. very informative. Thanks

finding dental care 02.24.08 | 10:20 PM ET

I agree, those numbers will grow as the population grows too. Great post!

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