June 02, 2007

As Medical Travel Grows So Does Consumer Information

Statistics show that the incidence of disability as a consequence of aging is decreasing in the US. We also know that these benefits still correlate strongly to income. The more affluent the less likely one is to be disabled. The following interview offers an insight into where disablement, income, travel, and medicine intersect. David Williams of the World Health Care Blog interviews Josef Woodman, author of Patients Beyond Borders.

David: Did you have a prototypical patient in mind when you wrote the book?

Josef: There are two types of medical tourists. One is the cosmetic surgery crowd and the Beverly Hills, Chevy Chase crowd. They head down to Brazil. They’ve got their own network. They spend probably twice and three times the amount they’d spend in America and come back home and brag about it. That’s a relatively low number. That’s not the crowd that we addressed.The crowd that we saw repeatedly in these hospitals were part of the 46 million uninsured and another 30 million under or partially insured. These are folks that are aging into expensive medical procedures, and they find themselves financially challenged. They’re in the middle class. They’re in the upper working class. They don’t want to have to sell their home or sell their small business just to pay for an expensive procedure.



Posted by rollingrains at June 2, 2007 03:26 AM