What You Should Know About Thai Medical Tourism

Contributed by Now Health International, 26 July, 2019

Today, Thailand is one of the most popular medical tourism destinations in the world. With over 2.4 million foreign patients visiting the Kingdom for medical reasons annually, Thailand is not merely a regional medical tourism leader, but a world leader as well. And it's not without good reason. In fact, there are several reasons that make Thailand a medical tourism hotspot, any of which would be more than enough for most people. But taken together, it's clear why the Southeast Asian nation is a veritable juggernaut in the industry. Here are just a few things you should know about Thai medical tourism.

1.) It has an extremely well-developed and advanced medical infrastructure

While there are blind spots in Thailand's healthcare system, especially in terms of public health services and providing basic care to citizens, it's a completely different story as far as the private sector is concerned. The Thai private medical sector certainly ranks among the most advanced in the world, and is certainly the best in the region, barring perhaps Singapore in some areas.

Quite notable are Bumrungrad International, the Bangkok Hospitals Group, and Samitivej Hospitals, which are internationally renowned and certainly compare with the very best hospitals in the US and the UK, as far as facilities and expertise are concerned. Several other private hospitals and specialized medical centers also operate throughout the country providing all kinds of best-in-class medical care for everything from open heart surgery to advanced dental care.

2.) International accreditation

Many private hospitals in Thailand, including the ones previously mentioned, are ISO and JCI-accredited, which means patients can expect a certain level of care comparable to similar accredited facilities in the Western World. This not only includes hospitals but convalescent homes and similar facilities as well.

3.) Top-notch 'regular' tourism destinations

Many international patients opt to go to Thailand for medical care because the country also offers some of the most interesting tourist spots in the world. It has some of the world's top beaches, incredible street food, a thriving international bohemian community, tropical jungles, and of course, ancient archaeological sites and elephants.

Not only does Thailand have those attractions, but there are also well-developed facilities and services to allow tourists and even recovering patients to access them. This feature alone makes Thailand one of the top spots for tourists who need all sorts of medical procedures. Why stay at a hospital or convalescent home when you can dig your toes into a white sand beach?

4.) A wide range of expertly-delivered medical treatments

We all know that Thailand is a world leader when it comes to cosmetic and sex-reassignment surgery, so there's not much need to elaborate on that. However, it's incredibly unfair to characterize Thailand's medical tourism industry solely by those procedures.

Thailand is also a world leader in cardiology, reproductive medicine, orthodontics, and orthopedics, attracting millions the world over for procedures related to those fields. Some treatments that are not typically available in the US or Europe, such as some types of stem cell and fertility treatments, are also readily available in Thailand.

The doctors and other medical experts that perform these procedures are also typically incredibly experienced, as many of them are used to seeing a large number of patients and thus many are able to work faster and at the same level or better than their Western counterparts. Many of these doctors are trained at top medical schools in the US and Europe, with most regularly attending international conventions to keep up-to-date on the latest techniques and technologies.

5.) Low treatment costs

This is really the biggest reason many foreigners from North America and Europe go to Thailand for different medical procedures. Some procedures, such as orthodontic surgery, may cost as little as a tenth of what it might in the US or Europe, and even at the most expensive hospitals for the most expensive procedures, you can expect to only pay a third or half at the most, as is the case with some cardiology cases.

Given that not everyone's insurance covers certain types of procedures, the cost savings of having something done in Thailand makes it attractive for certain procedures. For many patients, getting a procedure done in Thailand is the only option they have. Thankfully, Thai doctors are generally at par with their Western colleagues in terms of expertise.

Regardless of the availability of low cost of treatment or your reasons for traveling to Thailand, it's best to invest in international insurance from Now Health International or a similar insurance provider. This will give you protection from any unforeseen events that may happen during your stay, as your expenses can quickly go out of control should something out of the ordinary happen.

Tags: Healthcare | Health Insurance | Healthcare | Insurance | Thailand |



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