Are you wondering what all of the talk about medical tourism is, or WHAT it is? In its most simplistic form, medical tourism is the practice of going abroad to receive medical treatment.

Those in the medical tourism industry recognize that time is a precious commodity. Another aspect to the trends of medical tourism is to market to those who have little vacation or sick leave available to them. Multitasking is not new in the business world, and countries desiring to attract the medical tourist are appealing to those who would like to have an exotic and affordable vacation, but may feel they need to forgo it, in light of the upcoming surgery in the spring. Many countries are marketing their accredited, resort type facilities, and the amenities of the surrounding countryside to those in need of medical services.

There is hope for those who are in need! Medical tourism is not just for the rich and famous anymore, and Switzerland is not the only destination. About ten years ago, countries in Asia realized that the opportunity exists to fill the unmet needs of millions worldwide. Top quality medical care is available, at a fraction of the price, in a plethora of countries across the world. India and Thailand are currently competing as the forerunners in the medical tourism industry; however they are not the only destination options. Countries like Mexico, Costa Rica, Brazil, Poland and others are offering world class services at third world prices!

Rest assured that the medical facilities are state of the art, with cutting edge technology and equipment. Some of the poorest countries in the world have come to realize that there is a niche market for medical tourism and are making it their goal to provide the services. By investing the money to build the resort type facilities, send doctors for international training, and massive marketing campaigns; many of these countries have a vision for building their way out of poverty.

Just like with the rise of any industry, there are those who are seizing the opportunity to carve a niche for themselves in the medical tourism industry. They see that there are millions of people worldwide who are seeking an alternative to the high costs of medical care and the lengthy wait times in their home countries. A prospective medical tourist does not need to try to figure out all of the details, but rather can call a medical tourism travel agency and let them do the work!

Travel agents are standing by, offering packages that include discounted airfare, ground transportation, all meals and accommodations in a resort type facility, with internationally trained doctors and medical staff who will be extremely attentive before, during and after your procedure. All one really needs to do is to decide where you would like the medical vacation to be!

India has a mission of becoming the leading medical tourism country in the world. There are multitudes of hospitals, located all over the country, that are top quality and accredited by the international organizations. Their doctors are often U.S., Canadian or U.K trained and they are fluent in English. Their intent is to cater to tourists from the U.S., Canada, the U.K and Australia; in particular. If a prospective medical tourist has always desired to see the Taj Mahal, then Arga would become the destination of choice. Kerala is another choice destination, with the Western Ghats towering 500-2700m to the east and is the meeting of forty four rivers. If it is the hustle and bustle of the Indian city that a person wants, then New Delhi or dozens of others might be a better choice.

Although India has been highlighted, the other choices are equally as beautiful. The destination is really a matter of deciding where it is that you have always longed to visit, and then combining that with your vacation, to create a “health holiday”. Thailand offers some of the most pristine beaches in the world. Brazil offers rainforests, Costa Rica offers jungles and beaches both, France offers beautiful countryside and the glitter of Paris, Italy offers romantic villas, and Switzerland (of course) offers the Swiss Alps! There are many more, unnamed that are options that a qualified medical travel agent can assist you with searching out.

There are medical travel agencies that are prominent in the world of medical tourism. MedRetreat is a Washington D.C, US based company that offers nearly 200 services that can be obtained in 7 different countries. MedSolution is a Vancouver BC, Canadian based company that also offers complete packages to a variety of destinations, and gets their pay from the hospitals, in exchange for doing the bookings. Yet another is the Raleigh, North Carolina based company, European Medical Tourist. The Better Business Bureau and other sources are a good reference source for finding reliable agencies.

This is the 21st Century and we live in a global medical community. Whether you are on a limited income and do not want to choose between vacations and medical needs, or you are someone who desires to use your money in a more wise way; medical tourism is the best option today.

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