National Center for Policy Analysis |
At least 500,000 Americans travel to other countries for their medical care annually, an industry that grossed about $60 billion worldwide in 2006. Revenue from medical tourism is expected to rise to $100 billion by 2012, says a 2007 report by the National Center for Policy Analysis (NCPA).
Contributing to this boom in medical tourism -- which is loosely defined as people travelling from one place to another for whatever reason to get healthcare for whatever reason, be it lack of access, not enough insurance or for less-expensive outpatient procedures -- is the support from the American Medical Association (AMA) and the Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Health Care Organizations (JCAHO):
Further, they say that with medical tourism, people tend to choose a hospital rather than an individual physician; however, they need to also find out about a doctor's background as well.