Medical tourism is drawing patients, even in a pandemic.

The coronavirus pandemic has pushed millions of Americans into poverty and stripped more than 5.4 million of them of their health insurance, based on a examine by Households USA, a nonpartisan client advocacy group.

Many individuals have postpone medical procedures, and seen their well being deteriorate considerably. The concern of enormous medical payments has outweighed concern of contagion for some, giving rise to an elevated variety of sufferers searching for medical remedy out of the country.

“We’re seeing a pent-up demand for medical tourism in the course of the pandemic, significantly within the U.S. the place a fast-growing variety of Individuals are touring throughout the land border with Mexico for well being functions,” stated David G. Vequist IV, the founding father of the Center for Medical Tourism Research and a professor on the University of the Incarnate Word in San Antonio.

Even earlier than the pandemic, thousands and thousands of Individuals traveled to different nations for financial savings of 40 to 80 % on medical therapies, based on the worldwide medical tourism information Patients Beyond Borders. Mexico and Costa Rica have change into the preferred locations for dental care, beauty surgical procedure and prescription medicines, whereas Thailand, India and South Korea draw sufferers for extra advanced procedures involving orthopedics, cardiovascular points, most cancers and fertility remedy.

In 2019, 1.1 % of Individuals touring internationally did so for well being therapies, based on the National Travel and Tourism Office, though that determine accounts solely for many who glided by air.

Medical tourism has been decimated by coronavirus restrictions, however, even so, the dual crises of the economic system and the big pressure that Covid-19 has positioned on the already defective American health care system are pushing many sufferers to journey. Demand for nonessential surgical procedures has additionally been increase after greater than 177,000 scheduled surgical procedures had been postponed in the USA between March and June final yr, based on the Heart for Medical Tourism Analysis.

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