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MEDICAL TRAVEL ADVISOR

The five  most important things  you need to know before you travel.

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What Pricing Considerations do I need to Examine?

We understand that price is an important factor when considering your medical tourism options. That’s what motivated you to look outside of North America for your medical care. We at Beverly Hills Medical Group have provided the most favorable pricing for our clients but many other factors must be considered before choosing to travel. And, the underlying criteria should always be your safety. With this in mind, seek the very best medical travel value based on safety and quality.

Additionally, when researching costs abroad, be sure to compare all related expenses of receiving your surgery overseas. The only way to accomplish this is to provide a host of information about your specific medical condition in order to receive an accurate itemized quotation. Beware of package pricing.

As a rule, you should:

NEVER choose your surgeon & hospital solely based on price.

Safety, quality and service are equally important when it comes to your health.

Your challenge is to find the best VALUE, not price.

ONLY consider price quotations that are based on the assessment of your personal condition. Package pricing may not be all inclusive of your specific medical needs.

Other Price Considerations:

We have found that you can find almost any price you are looking for over the Internet when searching for health tourism options. Since your ultimate selection should be taken very seriously, it may not be prudent to simply go with the lowest price.

Beware of “Package Deals” that some companies offer. When traveling abroad for medical treatment, medical packages are virtually impossible to successfully manage and are considered to be the “HMO level” of overseas healthcare.

Make sure that before you travel, you receive a very detailed, personalized, firm price quotation that itemizes all related costs.

We have found that if your procedure in North America will cost $6,000 or less, it is generally not financially advantageous to travel abroad for treatment. Once you add on airfare, hotel accommodations, and other travel essentials, the net price of your procedure may exceed what you will pay at home.

How Much Should I Budget for My Medical Tourism Trip?

Your particular lifestyle, the medical tourism destination, and the type of medical tourism procedure you will be undergoing will dictate, to a large degree, how much money you will be spending. In general, the farther away your medical tourism destination the more you will pay for airfare. So, for example, expect to pay more if you are flying from Dallas to Bangkok, Thailand, than you would for a flight to Monterey, Mexico. At the same time you also need to take into account that some medical tourism destinations are more expensive than others. So even if a particular country is cheaper to travel to, you will need to factor in the relative cost of “living”, in comparison to another medical tourism destination.

What about your lifestyle preferences? Do you plan to stay at a five star hotel or are you comfortable “roughing” it at a local bed and breakfast? Some adventurous souls prefer to immerse themselves in the local culture and will literally live on a shoestring budget. Most everyone else though will tend to fall somewhere between the Holiday Inn and Club Med.

The type of medical tourism procedure or medical tourism treatment you are undergoing will also play a large part in your decision of where to stay and what you will do. A medical tourism patient undergoing open heart surgery or a knee replacement will require extra care and very comfortable conditions after leaving the hospital. Not the case for someone coming for a dental bridge or an eyelid lift. Wherever you decide to stay, make sure it serves your needs as a medical tourism patient.

Many of the expenses of a medical tourism trip will be the same as those of a “normal” trip or vacation. At the very minimum you will need to budget for airfare, hotel accommodations, transportation requirements and meals. Sightseeing tours and souvenirs are also a real possibility, particularly if you are traveling with a companion.

Although there are exceptions, expect to pay more if you plan to use the services of a medical tourism facilitator than you would if going at it alone. They will assist you with obtaining your passport, booking a flight, coordinating your lodging and pretty much helping you arrange every detail of your medical tourism trip (by the way, some hospitals provide these services as well). Note that most medical tourism facilitators and some international hospitals will include many of the above elements within a total package price (minus the tours and souvenirs). You will still be paying for these services but having everything packaged together will make your life much easier.

Why is medical care so much cheaper in certain countries?

Medical tourists like you are typically residents of industrialized nations of the world; the countries you travel to are often less developed with favorable currency exchange ratios but with highly qualified competitive medical facilities as well as the medical practitioners in their country.  At the same time, when you undergo a surgical procedure as a medical tourist in an offshore hospital, you save by not funding the legal fees, settlements, and malpractice insurance costs normally found in a U.S. based healthcare practice.

 

We’ve had many people ask, “why is the cost of healthcare so much less expensive overseas than here at home?”

Here are a few reasons why healthcare is less expensive overseas:

  • Lower cost of malpractice insurance – fewer law suits
  • Lower cost of labor
  • Lower real estate values
  • Lower construction costs (to build hospitals)
  • Favorable exchange rates
  • Lower government taxes
  • No accounts receivable collections issues with medical tourism patients (cash / credit card payment before release from hospital)
  • No emergency room bad debt
  • Less administrative paper shuffling
  • Less bureaucracy / red tape
  • Less expensive medical supplies/equipment/medications

What are the Hidden Costs

Whether purchasing a home or eating at a restaurant, none of us likes to be confronted with unexpected charges. With a process as complex as medical tourism, where so many parts come into play, what are potential hidden costs when planning for your medical tourism trip? (You do need to anticipate some potential hidden costs that could put a damper on your experience)

 

Unexpected Complications:

 

We don’t like to think about this one but it is a possibility for every procedure at any hospital. The important thing is to understand the potential risks and complications associated with your procedure, lower these risks wherever possible, and know what the hospital or clinic’s policy is when these occur.

 

Longer hospital stay:

 

Sometimes you just don’t heal as quickly as expected. Whether this is due to a complication, or, is simply a matter of your particular physiology, does not really matter, as you will have to pay for the additional care.

 

Extra medication or treatment at the hospital:

 

Before, during or after your procedure, your physician may find it necessary to prescribe additional medication, not normally associated with the price of your procedure. Normally, in these circumstances, you will be charged extra for this. However, it is still a good idea to check with your international medical provider or medical tourism facilitator for details.

 

Medication you may need to purchase to bring back to your hotel or even take home with you:

 

The hospital or clinic will usually provide you with medication once you leave the hospital. This usually consists of pain medication and antibiotics, but can also include anti-clotting drugs or a medication protocol specific to your surgery. This may or may not be covered in the price of your surgery so make sure you read the fine print.

 

Extra charges specific to hotels, recovery facilities and transportation services:

 

So what happens if your hotel bed sheets get soiled, or if you require additional transportation or meals? Although some surgery packages do include, lodging, meals, and transportation services, it is important that you check with your international medical provider – or even go directly to the hotel to see its policy on these issues. Facilities and companies used to working with medical tourism patients will tend to have more flexible policies regarding these issues.

 

Medical Tourism Facilitators or hospitals providing inaccurate price estimates:

 

Though rare, this can happen and there is no real way to prepare for it. You can, however, minimize the possibility of this occurring by submitting accurate information about your condition and general health. Your legal rights and recourse options will depend on the laws of the particular country you are in. However, it goes without saying that this type of situation is not good for the hospital and medical tourism facilitator – not to mention medical tourism in general, and it is a good bet that they will do everything possible to resolve the situation to your satisfaction.

 

Additional treatment required due to medical tourism patients not being forthcoming about their medical history:

 

For whatever reasons, some people prefer to withhold information about their previous medical history. This is a big mistake that can lead to the physician having to prescribe additional medication or treatment, canceling the surgery, or to a potentially dangerous complication during or after the surgery. A typical example might be that of a medical tourism patient who hides the fact that he or she suffers from hypertension, which may necessitate the physician prescribing additional medication or tests. In another case, a medical tourism patient may not disclose to the physician that he or she has had a previous surgery, which could cause difficulties or complications during the surgical procedure.  Both of these circumstances will probably generate additional costs not normally covered by your surgery package.

 

Preoperative exams:

 

These are the tests and exams that must be performed in order for the hospital and physician to make certain that you are a good candidate for your procedure. As the name suggests, they must be done before your surgery, sometimes even before traveling to the international hospital, and are oftentimes included in the price of your surgery. However, some medical tourism patients, due to their medical history or a chronic condition, may require additional exams not covered by the quoted surgery price. Therefore it is important to speak to your overseas physician and hospital liaison, in order to see which tests are covered in the price of your surgery.
To reduce the chance of nasty surprises, make sure that your hospital liaison or medical tourism facilitator provides you with a detailed list of the various costs you will need to pay (including potential ones). As stated previously, your surgery may be part of a package so you may not be able to request an itemized breakdown. However, you do have the right to know exactly what your expenses are likely to be, and if you will need to pay for anything else before, during, or after surgery.

What are the Prices?

Prices for medical services vary from procedure to procedure, and no medical decision should ever be made solely based on costs. Your medical, surgical, cosmetic, or dental procedures will save you (on average) 50 – 80% or more from the same procedure would cost you here in the USA… and that estimate includes roundtrip airfare, the complete healthcare treatment and hospital stay, plus all other related travel experience such as hotels, our exclusive 24/7 Medical Concierge, and most meals.

Medical Procedures at Beverly Hills Medical Group can be performed at 50% to 80% savings of the costs of what would normally be charged here in the United States. And yet the facilities at BHMG are U.S. Standard and are state of the art. With better technology and equipment than most hospitals in the United States, U.S. staffed and managed, Beverly Hills Medical Group is truly a U.S. facility in Asia. The medical staff are trained in Western medicine and they provide equal or greater quality surgical care than U.S. hospitals. These surgical procedures are performed with the same technology and expertise, yet cost a fraction of the price.

For example, a ACL reconstruction at Beverly Hills Medical Group by Western trained Board Certified Surgeons, might only cost you $3,000. In the United States you’re probably looking at $12,000.

How Much Will I Save?

This entirely depends upon the kind of medical procedure. Some procedures can save you up to 80% of the cost in US. Although you can save substantial amount, a good rule of thumb is that if a hospital or a doctor in US quotes $6,000 or above for a procedure, then it is worthwhile looking at Medical Tourism options. Below this amount, due to the cost of air travel and accommodation, traveling abroad for a treatment may work out higher.

Why prices are so low?

The prices seem low mostly because of the benefits of the local currency exchange rate and its weakened position against hard currencies like USD and the Euro. Therefore, for people living in industrialized countries the Philippines is a very convenient choice.

How do I know the cost of the procedure?

Check the individual medical packages for quoted pricing. Often times, the pricing will be given as a range pending consultation by our surgeons. If more information is needed, please call for assistance.

What procedures are covered or included in my quote estimate?

All quoted fees are all inclusive of all surgical charges. All quotes will vary depending on your procedure type.

How soon must I make the payment?

You will be required to make a deposit prior to going for your procedure. The balance of the payment is due either before or upon treatment.

Is there a way to finance my medical procedure?

Currently, we do not offer financing for any medical procedure.