Medical tourism is a concept centered around traveling to hospitals and medical facilities for different treatments. According to an article by the Global Wellness Institute (GWI), it can often reveal the flaws of a country's health care system.
More importantly, medical tourism could actually be negatively impacting the wellness of individual countries. While some see this trend as an opportunity for countries to grow their health care system, the GWI finds that it highlights the negative aspects of the country's supply and demand in the health care system.
However, a study conducted by the University of Massachusetts Amherst found that positive impacts like employment and business opportunities did occur from medical tourism. Specifically, the GWI looked into India as a medical tourism destination, where 86% of the rural population lacks health insurance, and found that some claim this advancement in medical tourism merely shifts resources to cater to the elite.
The overall conclusion is that it is critical to implement and incorporate complimentary programs into these medical tourism destinations to make sure that all members, even the poorest, are able to benefit in medical care.