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Tourism and health - Essay Example

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YOUR NAME HERE YOUR TUTOR HERE COURSE HERE DATE HERE The Health Tourism Industry The health tourism industry is a booming business opportunity, most noticeably abroad in Asia and Europe. Billions of dollars of revenue are spent by consumers that are looking for more affordable health care than that of their current, domestic health system…
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Tourism and health
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HERE YOUR HERE HERE HERE The Health Tourism Industry The health tourism industry is a booming business opportunity, most noticeably abroad in Asia and Europe. Billions of dollars of revenue are spent by consumers that are looking for more affordable health care than that of their current, domestic health system. It is not necessarily because foreign nations maintain more sophisticated medical equipment, growth in international health tourism is largely a product of inefficient health care systems and accessibility. Countries that are experiencing higher growth in health tourism, such as China, can provide a template for learning to the United States as a means of revamping the health care system. The American health care system needs correction or individuals would not be seeking medical procedures outside of their home country. There are many in the United States that believe the health care system is first class and unparalleled in its efficiency. The main crisis in relation to fixing this problem is that “most American decision makers are in a state of denial” (Choudhary and Bhatia 1). Growing costs of obtaining medical insurance and inflated pricing on medical procedures are inter-twined in the medical system in its current condition. This is due to rising costs within the medical supply chain and also to satisfy profit objectives by major insurance carriers with expensive operational models. With all of these rising costs and with governmental denial about the efficiency and sustainability of the American health care system, it is no wonder that foreign health tourism seems to be a favorable alternative to domestic health care provision. A startling number of baby boomers, individuals in the general retirement age, will be traveling overseas to have a variety of medical procedures conducted. It is estimated that 600,000 will participate in this industry by the end of this year (Akitunde 1). Baby boomers are experiencing diminished investments and are concerned about cost savings as it relates to medical care. Because of this, they seek out comparative pricing of different international medical procedures and then select the best option that fits a diminishing budget. There is no evidence, however, these health tourism travelers are also looking at the dangers of having foreign medical procedures conducted. Since America is always promoting its values and principles of protecting and honoring the fellow man, it might suggest that leaders should exit their denial state and promote the potential dangers of this risky tourist activity. Opinion leaders in China, however, draw on their conceptions of a reliable health system model to justify keeping medical tourism active and promoted (Rodin and Ferranti 1). China believes that by promoting lower cost health care, it will attract more foreign investment and there should be less concern about safety issues to the traveler due to the first class health care system. China is able to distribute its health supply and distribution needs more effectively with less reliance on private investment to fuel economic growth. This ultimately leads to lower prices for a variety of medical procedures that is significantly less than in the United States. Sometimes these differences amount to thousands of dollars, allowing the individual to obtain a moderately priced international flight while still avoid high costs of the American-based procedure alternative. Additionally, travelers that take advantage of health tourism were also researched to determine their most important health tourism needs. It was discovered that natural elements during the experience are important, such as clean water, fresh air, and natural environment provided a more holistic health experience (Kucukusta 1880). These elements do not exist in the American health system in regular clinical practice, thus the Chinese methodology of carrying out health care appeals more to the traveler. The health experience is supposed to be one of healing, not anxiety or sterilization that is regularly supplementary during American health care practice. This might pose another learning lesson for those in the U.S. that are allegedly in a state of denial about the viability of the U.S. health care system to revamp the aesthetics of care to gain more consumer patronage to various medical facilities. One need only observe the clinical environment where many procedures are accomplished to witness the lack of natural environment and pleasing landscapes. Cost savings, governmental denials, more efficient foreign health systems, and lack of natural environmental focus seem to be the largest drivers that continue to boost revenues of health tourism. The U.S. should take a lesson from successful foreign medical facilities that gain much revenue from American tourists to identify what should be changed to best fit the needs of diverse travelers. If costs were lessened, government more open-minded, with more natural aesthetics added and modeling of foreign health systems it is likely Americans would seek their procedures domestically. Works Cited Akitunde, Anthonia. Medical tourism: Why more Boomers are going Abroad for Treatment. 2012. Web. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/06/04/medical-tourism-health-tourism- medical- travel_n_1551217.html Choudhary, Arvind and Ashish Bhatia. “What the US can Learn from other Nations Healthcare Systems”, Medical Tourism Magazine. October 3, 2012. Web. http://www.medicaltourismmag.com/article/what-the-u-s-can-learn-from-other-nations- healthcare-systems.html Heung, Vincent C.S. and Deniz Kucukusta. “Wellness Tourism in China: Resources, Development and Marketing”, International Journal of Tourism Research, 10.2: 1880. Rodin, Judith and David de Ferranti. “Asia a Global Model for Health Coverage”, China Daily. November 03, 2012. Web. http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/opinion/2012-11/03/content_15871572_2.htm Read More
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