Rx for Clever Startups: Take Operations Overseas - Medical Tourism
Posted Nov 18 2008 12:14am
Rx for Clever Startups: Take Operations Overseas- Medical Tourism: "Think globalization means little more than call centers in New Delhi? Then you haven't seen what happens when seriously large numbers of Americans, who spend more than $570 billion at U.S. hospitals annually, start taking health-care holidays in far cheaper climes. Nor have you seen how much money there is to be made by helping them get there.
We're about to find out. This year alone, upwards of 500,000 Americans are expected to travel overseas to get their bodies fixed, at prices 30 to 80 percent less than at home.
Medical tourism, as the practice is known, is rapidly becoming the top choice for consumers who grapple with hefty medical bills. Adult Americans who are either uninsured or considered "underinsured" number more than 61 million - a figure that's likely to soar in coming years.
With places like Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, India, the Philippines, and Thailand pitching their low-cost care, Americans are expected to help turn global medical tourism into a $40 billion-a-year industry by 2010, according to David Hancock, author of The Complete Medical Tourist.