Recently, I spoke about What are the essential measures, a healthcare facility should take in handling international patients in Medical Tourism? I have put some points below for my industry colleagues. I have put it in very broad terms without going in much detail. I shall upload a presentation about same soon.
Essential Measures (activities) for International Patient at Healthcare Facility Abroad:
1. To consider and anticipate patient’s healthcare and non-healthcare related needs
2. To understand Patient’s Language. There is a serious problem with translators, as general translators are not equally capable of doing translation of medical terms, this is specialized field and require better understanding of medical terminology in both languages. Unfortunately there are no standards; we need set of standards for this particular field
3. To value Cultural / Ethical issues. Very essential component.
4. To provide comprehensive logistic and travel support (directly or through third part – facilitator or travel agents)
5. To provide efficient, transparent and authorized legal documentation process
6. To develop transparent pricing policies, every expense should be discuss in advance. Concern remain that how ethical is to escalate price list for international patient, and also up to what level. Patient shouldn’t mind paying extra money for extra services but should he/she pay extra for same services just because he has come across the border.
7. To extend comprehensive healthcare services at one place or sufficient arrangement incase patient needs to visit other facility.
8. To make available sufficient documentation to insurance/corporate/government funded patients. Provide help to patient to get reimbursements, if require.
9. To do necessary and satisfactory pre-operative and post operative arrangements for patient. Can’t emphasize enough on this topic, lack of post operative care arrangement is still a big concern. This is big hurdle in growth of medical tourism industry. A lot coordination require from all industry players to overcome this hurdle.
10. To offer enough follow-up even after discharge and patient travels back to home country, to ensure that ultimate objectives are achieved
11. To put forward open communication programs between patient ( and his family members) and hospital management and healthcare professional involve in treatment
12. To prepare and make available secure and effective patient record handling plan, and to extend authorized record transportation activities whenever required
13. To develop satisfactory and compassionate action plan incase treatment/surgery goes wrong, this include to be prepared for worst outcome in advance to make sure that patient gets much needed support in case of any unexpected situation.
14. Comprehensive planning and support system to ensure that patient will get back home country without any hassles, specially incase of challenges arising from social, political and/or regional unfortunate activities
15. To develop comprehensive case study, record all instances, to evaluate outcome for further study. To make sure that necessary information is provided to association and government bodies for comprehensive report on medical tourism issues and opportunities
Though there are many more suggestions but I think above 15 points are good enough to start with. Moreover, there are certainly many more optional components to provide value added benefits for delightful experience for patient.
Lets discuss this. Thanks for reading, waiting to hear from you.
Dr Prem Jagyasi
Chartered Marketing Consultant
A successful entrepreneur and experienced strategic professional, Dr Prem Jagyasi is a renowned Chartered Management, Healthcare Marketing and Medical Tourism Consultant. Providing high-profile consultancy services to Government authorities and private healthcare organizations, Dr. Prem Jagyasi is a noticeably leading medical tourism consultant in the world.
Currently, Dr Prem Jagyasi is MD & CEO of ExHealth, a Dubai HealthCare City based firm engaged in offering multi-dimensional healthcare solutions in international domain. He also serves the Medical Tourism Association—a Non Profit organization based in USA as Honorary Chief Strategy Officer. He is also the Chief Editor of UAE’s leading health magazine – HealthFirst, published in association with one of the leading English dailies of the region.
Apart from running a successful healthcare solution firm and consultancy business, he has initiated several innovative healthcare awareness projects such as Family Health Festival, No Tobacco Campaign, Summer Health Festival, Ahlan Ramadan and Diabetes Events. His initiatives are endorsed and recognized by the country’s ministry of health and other government authorities. On a global front, he is also working on Medical Tourism Guide, Educational Events, Global Health Directory, and workshops on quality practice for international patients. etc.
Early in his career, he has developed hospitals, medical centre and computerized diagnostic centre. He has initiated unique concepts like the first boutique hospital, first computerized diagnostic centre, first corporate clinic chain, etc in the Gulf region.
His in-depth educational profile covers multi-dimensional qualifications, Bachelor in Medicine, MBA in Healthcare Management & Post Graduate Diploma specializing in Healthcare Marketing Management. Chartered Association of BA, US & Canada (A Government Patent Professional Association) awarded him with the Chartered Consultant status.
Dr Prem’s Current Profile:
MD & CEO – ExHealth, Dubai HealthCare City, UAE | www.ExHealth.com
Chief Editor – HealthFirst Magazine | www.HealthFirstMag.com
Chief Strategic Officer – Medical Tourism Association, USA | www.medicalTourismAssociation.com
Founder – UAE Health Network | www.UAEHealthnetwork.com
Note: No Liability in anyway. Readers are advised to take action at their own understanding.