Defenders of organized medicine are fond of saying that the United States has the best healthcare in the world, but I challenge that. I don't think we have the best healthcare in the world, I think we have the most expensive healthcare in the world. In fact, in terms of results for dollars spent, I think the United States ranks very near the bottom of the list of all industrialized nations. We get less actual health than anyone else for each dollar that we spend.
This realization is now hitting the general public as well, and they are increasingly leaving this country to find offshore locations and assess quality medical care and surgical procedures elsewhere. This phenomenon is called "medical tourism."
In medical tourism, patients who might normally undergo some sort of medical procedure in the United States, usually a costly surgical procedure, instead fly to the Philippines, Thailand or other countries to have the procedures done there.
As a result, they save an enormous amount of money. Offshore medical procedures can be performed for as little as one-tenth the cost of what would normally be charged here in the United States. And yet the facilities offshore are state of the art. These are modern hospitals that often are newer and have much better technology and equipment than hospitals in the United States. They are typically staffed by Western doctors and surgeons 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.