In conventional medical tourism, the potential medical tourists have all the information they need to make an informed decision regarding the healthcare destination, the facility and the healthcare provider. On the other hand, wellness tourism lacks an established structure. Hence, individuals interested in seeking wellness services and alternative therapies have to go by anecdote theories and claims made by individuals, past patients, and the healthcare facilities.
There are ways a potential wellness tourist can judge the quality of the facility and the experience of the wellness provider or therapist. Let us discuss about the key qualities of a good wellness destination and facility, which will help all potential wellness tourists make a knowledgeable decision.
Assessing quality of alternative medicine
Since alternative therapies are not regulated and monitored, they lack a structure and hence, the quality indicators in wellness and alternative therapies are dependent on the structure of the facility, the process that they follow, and the outcome of the treatment. Additionally, the use of technology in alternative medicine, the interpersonal structure, and the amenities that the facility offers to wellness seekers, can also serve as quality indicators. Whenever a potential wellness seeker decides to travel overseas for alternative therapies, he/she should try to rate the therapist and the facility on the aforementioned quality indicators, so that he/she can receive proper and high quality care overseas.
Evaluating facilities and services
For evaluating the quality of the institution or facility overseas, the wellness seeker has to research about the type of institution and its reputation locally as well as internationally. You can always find such information on the internet by reading the patients’ testimonials. However, one should always keep in mind that many facilities try to provide fake testimonials and hence it becomes important for you to make sure that the claims made are true. You can get in touch with the patients who have received alternative treatments at a particular facility and ask about their experiences.
In many countries, for example India, government authorities regulate alternative therapies to a certain extent and hence it is illegal for anyone to practice some alternative therapies, such as Homeopathy and Ayurvedic treatments, without a formal education.
In many other countries, alternative therapists and facilities have to obtain a license from government and healthcare authorities before they can cater to patients, especially international tourists. When selecting a wellness and alternative medicine facility, you should make sure that the facility is duly licensed to operate, and has a history of catering to internationally traveling wellness seekers.
Success results and case studies
Since you will be traveling to another part of the world to avail the benefits of alternative therapies and treatments, you have to make sure that the treatment you are planning to undergo has high success results. It is important to ensure that the facility you choose has highly qualified therapists. You should ask the treating facility as many questions as you can, while focusing on the quality of the facility, the level of hygiene they follow, the modern equipment they use, and how well they cater to international patients.
Research material and publications
Wellness tourists can easily get information online about alternative therapies, facilities offering these therapies, and the treatment options available for their specific medical condition. Try to get as much information as possible from government websites or websites of non-profit organizations, which work with a sole aim of providing verifiable and credible information to wellness seekers all over the world.
Wellness seekers should also try to access information such as research material published by several organizations, which provides detailed information related to the treatment, its success rate, and its safety aspects.
Recognition and Awards
Many countries that have established themselves as reputed alternative tourism destinations, have set up accreditation and recognizing authorities. For example, India has the Indian Board of Alternative Medicines, an institution operated and controlled by the Government of West Bengal, which legalizes and validates the training courses, practice and aids research in the field of alternative systems of medicine. The presence of such organizations assures potential wellness tourists that the system operates under strict conformity with government regulations and the laws of the land.
If a renowned organization certifies and recognizes an alternative medicine facility, it would mean that the facility employs well trained therapists who have the necessary knowledge and experience to perform an alternative medicine therapy.