April 12, 2022
The Pros and Cons of Going Abroad for a Medical Procedure
According to the latest estimates, around 144,000 Britons leave the country every year to get medical procedures done. In some cases, it’s because they want to benefit from the specialised expertise of foreign doctors. Or they may want to save on a procedure. You also have people who want to be able to have a procedure done and recover in an exotic and luxurious locale.
While these are all valid reasons to go, you also have to know some of the downsides of medical tourism because they’re very real. Let’s take a look at some of the pros and cons of going abroad for a medical procedure before you make the jump.
Pro – Better Service
Everybody’s rooting for the NHS and maybe you were loyal to the service all of your life out of principle. But there are times when you have to put yourself first and going for a procedure abroad could allow you to get access to much better service in many cases. You could also get some procedures done much faster.
The waiting list for certain procedures can be extremely long with the NHS, and you could go to a different country, get an appointment, get the procedure done, and come back faster than you’d have to wait. So, if you want something done urgently and get some of the perks of private healthcare, then medical tourism could be a better option.
Con – Recovery and Follow Up Issues
One of the things you have to consider with going abroad for surgery is that you may have to stay there to recover, which can be extremely inconvenient. It’s fine if you know the destination, the local culture, and the people there, but recovering in a completely foreign place is not always the best idea.
There’s also the issue of follow-up exams. Most surgeries will require that you go back to the doctor for a follow-up to make sure that the healing process is going as it’s supposed to and to prevent complications. Going back and forth and taking long flights just to see a doctor is not something most people would like.
If you thought that you could get follow-ups at home, think again. You will often be required to go to the same doctor, and if you want to get a corrective procedure because of a poorly done job, you can expect some local providers to refuse to see you because they don’t want to deal with the consequence of doing a bad job because of a previous doctor’s incompetence.
This is why we would suggest that you look at a local private healthcare provider instead of the quality and speed of service being your main issue. A private healthcare service like Circle Health Group will allow you to get a procedure much faster than the NHS and in a much more comforting environment. They also have facilities all around the country, which will make follow-ups much easier. They’re one of the top-ranked private healthcare groups in the country and have a solid reputation for great service and expertise, so consider speaking with them today and see what they have to offer.
Pro – Benefit from Local Expertise
Some countries are known for the quality of their experts in certain areas and going to these countries for a specified procedure could be a great idea if your goal is to be treated by the best of the best.
Countries like Turkey are known for having great hair transplant doctors, for instance, while South Korea is known for having some of the best plastic surgeons on earth. You also have countries like Singapore that are more advanced in pretty much every field of medicine and offer some breakthrough treatments you won’t be able to get anywhere else.
If your goal is to get the best treatment in the best facilities the world has to offer, then medical tourism might be the way to go.
Con – Safety Issues
With that being said, medical tourism can turn into a nightmare pretty quickly if you work with the wrong doctor or facility. You could experience issues with your insurance provider if the doctor is not properly licenced, for instance. The facility you go to could have sub-par hygiene and high occurrences of medical negligence too.
Malpractice issues could be much more difficult to solve if you get treatment in another country. Getting recourse for malpractice that happened here wouldn’t be that much of an issue, but you could have little to no recourse if it happened in a country that doesn’t have strict malpractice laws or reliable ways to report and prove malpractice. This is something you have to think about before leaving the country.
Medical tourism can be a great way to see the world and get a procedure done on the cheap at the same time. But it has a lot of disadvantages too, so make sure that you study the destination you were thinking of going to in detail and the state of its medical system first.