Printable Version

© 2013 Medical Travel Today

Medical Travel Today is a publication of CPR Strategic Marketing Communications, a public relations firm based near New York City that specializes in healthcare and life sciences, with an international clientele. CPR, its Partners, and clients are at the nexus of where medical travel is today, and where it will be tomorrow.

Laura Carabello

Amanda Haar

Managing Editor
Megan Kennedy

Table of Contents

From the Editor

From the Editor: This week in Medical Travel Today, Amanda Haar

News in Review

The Goodness Company Announces Sponsorship of Africa Medical Travel Congress

Medical Tourism is Serious Business

Ayurveda Helps Kerala Emerge as a Key Medical Tourism Hub

The Top Five Medical Tourism Destinations in Asia are Joining Forces

Understanding the Benefits of Medical Travel and Satori World Medical’s Patient Experience

Chennai Attracts 40 Percent of Medical Tourists Visiting India: CII

Why is Medical Tourism in Australia Booming?


SPOTLIGHT: Pablo Castillo, MedBrick, Inc. and Steve Zatylny, Penfield Care Management

From The Aisles

SALUD Panama Medical Tourism Conference

Industry News

Hospital Prices No Longer Secret as New Data Reveals Bewildering System, Staggering Cost Differences

Medical Tourism: Best Places For Quality Health Care Overseas

Experts: Here’s What Vegas Needs to Become a Health Care Hub

Caymans: Moving Ahead with Medical Tourism

A New Era in Medical Travel Begins in Puerto Rico and Costa Rica

State hospitals' income from medical tourism up 220% since 2010

Upcoming Events

Second Annual Value Symposium

Malaysia International Medical Tourism Fair

Global Connected Care Conference and 4th Meditour Expo

27th International Travel Expo

The Health Tourism Show

Africa Medical Executives & Medical Tourism Conference

Indian Medical Tourism Conference 2013

The Wellness Tourism Congress at the Global Spa & Wellness Summit

4th Medical Tourism Saint Petersburg Exhibition

Mexico: Global Summit on Medical Tourism Business

2nd Malaysia International Healthcare Travel Expo 2013

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Global Health Voyager


Volume 7, Issue 10

By Amanda Haar, Editor


Recently I’ve been making the rounds of college campuses with my soon-to-be high school senior daughter. As anyone who has done this before knows, after you’ve sat through five or so information sessions and taken the hour-long tours, it all starts to get a little fuzzy. The claims of academic rigor begin to blend, the professorial pedigrees are indistinguishable, and the “unique” curriculum approaches sound remarkably un-unique. Ultimately, it just gets harder and harder to decipher the cost-value proposition of the potential experience.

Sound familiar?

While there are a million ways in which the delivery of healthcare and higher education differ, there are an amazing number of similarities in the selection process. For example, the institution has to provide the desired services with some established standards of quality; the student/patient must prove to be a qualified candidate; the offering has to be affordable; and the experience/service has to deliver the desired outcome. And on top of that, there’s the intangible — the one aspect of every school that my daughter can recall even months after a visit: the “fit.”

For my daughter the fit is determined by how well the institution meets or exceeds her expectations — often in some surprising areas (i.e. the weirder the intramural offerings the better). It’s further influenced by how well she connects with a school’s ambassadors. Are they talking her language or are they addressing her parent? (Big turn-off.) Or even worse, are they just trying too hard? And much to my relief, she’s actually paying attention to how many students start and finish their education at the institution, which I consider to be as accurate an indicator of overall satisfaction and affordability as you’re going to get.

While she’s far from making a final selection she is closer to discovering what truly matters to her. Ultimately, what makes a school the right fit for her is in all likelihood completely different from what will make it the right fit for many of her future classmates.

In other words, marketing an institution isn’t just about saying the right thing to the right audience. It’s about being the right place for the right individual. By authentically representing what you are as well as what you are not will do more to attract the right type of patient than any fancy brochure ever could. And trust me, I’ve got a stack of fancy brochures that in no way fit the bill.

As always, we welcome your comments, story ideas, and press releases.


Amanda Haar, Editor

Global Health Voyager

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Steve Zatylny, President, Penfield Care Management

Pablo Castillo, Chief Executive Officer, MedBrick, Inc.

Pablo Castillo, MedBrick, Inc. and Steve Zatylny, Penfield Care Management

Editor’s Note: A lot of the recent news in medical travel has centered around new partnerships involving organizations based in different countries or even different sides of the globe. So when I heard about MedBrick and Penfield Care Management, two companies not only based in the same country but also the same city, I took note. I also reached out to the leaders of each organization to learn more about the partnership and their respective corporate goals for it. Here’s what they had to say.

Medical Travel Today (MTT): What prompted you to partner at this time?

Steve Zatylny (SZ): I have known Pablo for quite some time. We’ve both been in the industry for 10 years and, in fact, at one time worked for the same organization.
I know that Pablo’s strength lies in Latin America and the many deep-rooted relationships he has there.

Penfield’s original focus was on the Caribbean and major medical being directed into the US and Canada.

Over time we expanded our offering to include finding care solutions for Canadians wishing to travel to the US, and for Americans looking for alternative care options, both in and out of the US. We also deal with international travel companies — that is, insurance companies that offer an emergency medical travel component to their policies. We coordinate those care needs as they arise.

However, in the recent past we started getting so many requests for care outside US that I knew I needed a partner that could provide a solid network, was intimately familiar with the facilities, and shared the same standards of care concept that we held.
Given all that, choosing to work with Pablo was a no-brainer.

Pablo Castillo (PC): My story is much the same as Steve described it. MedBrick is very strong in Latin America and the Caribbean. Coming at it from the opposite side, we have prospective clients looking for care options in the US and Canada. Steve has a great network of facilities, and great connections. Knowing him as I do makes it possible for me to trust the services and quality of care that he’s offering and I, in turn, offer to my clients.

So far it’s been an excellent match.

MTT: So were you both looking for a partner at the same time?

PC: Yes and no. We weren’t actively or desperately looking, but it was getting bigger and bigger on our radar of things to address. As they say, it was like a ring to a finger. The fit was there and here we are.

SZ: For Penfield, when we first launched we weren’t sure the need was there but as business developed it became clear this was a path we were going to have to take to grow. Pablo was always in the back of mind. The fact that we both operate out of offices in Quebec certainly facilitated discussions, but more important was the fact that we hold the same belief in providing quality care at affordable costs.

MTT: What were the individual corporate criteria for choosing facilities to include in your network and how have you married those two together?

SZ: Penfield’s a bit unique, I think. We never direct a patient to specific facility. Rather, we give prospective patients the resources they need to make an educated choice in terms of where to go. That said, our network is built on quality standards. As you know, there are a lot of quality organizations that rank various aspects of care delivered in the US. From my perspective, the Carechex program put out by the Delta Group is the most extensive ranking system out there. They have a number of evaluating criteria that address everything from safety and outcomes to readmits and internal processes. I subscribe to a number of those ranking systems and use the data they provide to educate members. Ultimately, the patient needs to rank their own priorities in making a choice. Is it outcomes? Proximity? Specific type of treatment or device?

If you can educate a member as fully as possible, nine times out of 10 they’ll choose the best personal outcome option and limit their out-of-pocket expense. When you design a network made up of quality facilities members get excellent choices.

PC: From the MedBrick perspective, basically for every prospective customer seeking care outside the US, we have a network of centers that we call MedBrick Centers of Excellence (MCE). These include facilities in several countries in Latin America that are highly renowned for their healthcare development. A number of the facilities are JCI credentialed, but for those that aren’t they are accredited by their local health department or boards that, in all cases, have stricter regulations and parameters than JCI. They’re actually quite a bit tougher to meet.

With those rigid standards in place we have confidence the MCE facilities can provide care of an extremely high quality.

In terms of aligning ourselves and standards, the only thing we needed to do was to gain a general familiarity with the facilities with which we each work. We have a level of trust and confidence in each other that allows this to work.

MTT: Apart from a simply expanded array of facility offerings, is there any particular aspect of the partnership that is immediately working well?

SZ: I can speak to that. Having a Latin American network is a particularly nice enhancement to Penfield’s preventative care offerings. We provide an executive physical product that can be done in a top US facility, but can also be done elsewhere. It’s of great appeal to couple the exam with a golf weekend, say, for four executives, or to marry it with a spa option for a couple. Our list of options really widens with Latin America on the list of possible destinations.

MTT: If you’re comfortable answering, I’m curious why you partnered rather than merged?

SZ: We actually had some preliminary conversations about the two approaches. However, I decided that since my company is relatively new, I wanted to develop and grow it more in order to make it more attractive to Pablo.

PC: The partnership is working well. It’s been relatively seamless and we’re each working to our strengths. Maybe a merger is possible in the future but we need to see how we grow individually and how each contributes. Plus, there’s the overall shape and health of the medical industry as a whole to consider.

MTT: When you say seamless, does that mean that your partnership is invisible to respective clients?

SZ: Not at all. I don’t want MedBrick or Penfield to be invisible to clients. I think it’s important for them to know that, where needed, we are outsourcing to ensure that they get the best quality of care. I want them to know that I’m working with someone intimately familiar and networked in the Latin American market. Hiding that doesn’t serve me or the patient well.

PC: I agree. We definitely aren’t looking to hide the partnership. We want the industry to know that we are two companies working together and that, as such, we can bring added value to them. Building our presence and reach is very important.
We are very much up and running and servicing patients.

MTT: Have you seen an uptick in interest or business since you partnered?

SZ: I think in general the number of request for proposals requiring a Latin American component is up. Most of these are coming from health plans, some self-insured companies, and international insurers needing a travel solution

MTT: How about from the employer side?

SZ: There’s definitely a growing interest from employer groups…and not just TPAs in the US but elsewhere. I think healthcare reform is driving that a bit as it’s a viable option. I, personally, have had an employer come on board but the conversation is being had more and more.

PC: I agree. There’s definitely a growing interest from employers and international insurance companies. The large, international employers see the value of hospitals in different countries. They’re used to operating in an international arena. This approach suits their monetary needs and provides for the employees in a very responsible way.

About Penfield Care Management, Inc.

Penfield Care Management, Inc. is an international care management company offering a wide range of healthcare solutions, including claims negotiation and repricing, directional health, actuarial services, wellness and international assistance. Visit www.penfieldcare.com.

About MedBrick Inc.

MedBrick Inc. was founded in 2010 and provides medical cost containment services, travel assistance, travel insurance and medical tourism for healthcare services throughout Latin America and the Caribbean. Visit www.medbrick.com.

About Pablo Castillo

Pablo Castillo is Chief Executive Officer at MedBrick, a Canadian company specializing in travel assistance, medical cost containment and medical tourism in Latin America, the Caribbean and Canada.

In 2000, Pablo graduated from Bishop´s University in Quebec. Since then, he has been involved in the health insurance industry and has developed strong expertise in the medical cost containment and travel assistance fields.

Through a growing network of medical providers in Latin America, the Caribbean and Canada, Pablo and MedBrick are reaching out globally, providing specialized and reliable services to insurance carriers, assistance companies, third party administrators and individuals looking for medical services abroad.

About Steve Zatylny

Steve Zatylny was born and raised in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, and holds a B.A. in Political Economy from Bishop's University. He has spent the past 10 years managing healthcare costs for clients throughout the Caribbean and Southeast US. During his eight years in the industry, Steve developed cost containment strategies that would effectively reduce healthcare costs for his clients while maintaining a high level of care and service. Steve launched Penfield Care Management in 2012 and has strategically aligned himself with the finest partners in the industry to offer a complete healthcare solution for those seeking medical treatment in the US, Canada and Latin America. Steve currently serves on the board of the Institute of Caribbean Insurance Risk Managers.

steve@penfieldcare.com 1.877.791.0529 extension 101

From The Aisles

SALUD Panama Medical Tourism Conference

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Pramod Goel, CEO, PlacidWay

Held in Panama City on March 14, 2013, and hosted by Luis Santamaría, director general of SALUD Panama, the SALUD Panama medical tourism conference was a first-of-its- kind event promoting medical tourism in Panama. Featuring over 100 medical travel experts, the four-day conference provided positive international exposure for Panama's growing medical tourism industry.

Among the speakers was Pramod Goel, CEO of PlacidWay, one of the largest and fastest growing medical tourism companies in the US. The author of Evolution of Medical Tourism - from Cottage Industry to Corporate World, Goel believes that, “Latin American countries, including Panama, have some of the greatest potential to grow in the medical tourism industry.”

In addition to presentations by industry thought leaders, attendees were provided the opportunity to visit the country’s top hospitals. Led by Santamaria, the tours included Hospital Punta Pacifica, San Fernando Hospital, Pailtila Medical Center, and The National Hospital.

First up was the first private hospital in the Republic of Panama, San Fernando Hospital, a JCI-accredited facility that is recognized for its high-quality and patient-centered care services.

From there, attendees traveled to one of the top-rated hospitals in Panama, Paitilla Medical Center. Paitilla features an oncology center, an infertility clinic, and an intensive care unit. The facility also has a well-deserved reputation for blending excellent patient care services with the latest in medical, diagnostic and surgical technologies. Physically connected to the Hard Rock Hotel Panama, as well as the largest shopping mall in Panama, the hospital is positioned well to handle the needs of medical tourists.

Then the delegation went to the JCI-accredited Hospital Punta Pacifica, a private hospital associated with over 150 clinics, specializing in cardiology, orthopedics, women's health, and IVF programs, as well as offering imaging procedures, surgeries, four surgical suites, an intensive care unit, a clinical laboratory and an emergency room.

The final visit was to National Hospital, which is equipped with a da Vinci surgical system and offers endoscopic surgical procedures, diagnostics, fetal diagnostics, diagnostic imaging, and more. An ISO-certified facility, the hospital recently underwent major renovations, expanding its capacity by 300 percent.

The conference also provided excellent networking opportunities. Over 150 doctors, dentists, clinic owners, hospitals and other healthcare facilities, including marketing managers of hospitality and hospital industries, were on hand to offer deeper insight into the potential of Panama as a medical travel destination.

Goel noted, “The medical landscape in Panama is impressive, with extremely qualified doctors, a majority of them American-educated, practicing in high-end medical centers and utilizing the latest in state-of-the-art medical technology from the US. The medical tourism program in Panama is young and has a potential to be a significant player in the region, given the right infrastructure and support.”

Climate-friendly, people-friendly and geographically diverse, Panama offers one of the ultimate travel destinations for medical travelers, whether seeking plastic surgery, dental procedures, fertility treatment, cardiac care, cancer treatments or bariatric procedures. Panama is on the cusp of creating and developing a solid medical tourism program. A master plan for sustainable medical tourism program with private-public collaboration will be the key to industry growth and competitive offerings in Latin America

To download the PDF, click here.

Industry News

Hospital Prices No Longer Secret as New Data Reveals Bewildering System, Staggering Cost Differences

huffingtonpost.com—When a patient arrives at Bayonne Hospital Center in New Jersey requiring treatment for the respiratory ailment known as COPD, or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, she faces an official price tag of $99,690.

Less than 30 miles away in the Bronx, N.Y., the Lincoln Medical and Mental Health Center charges only $7,044 for the same treatment, according to a massive federal database of national health care costs made public on Wednesday.

Americans have long become accustomed to bewilderment and anxiety when confronting health care bills. The new database underscores why, revealing the perplexing assortment of prices for medical care, with the details of bills seemingly untethered to any graspable principle.

To continue reading click here

Industry News

Medical Tourism: Best Places For Quality Health Care Overseas

huffingtonpost.com — Medical tourism has seen a surge in popularity over the last 10 to 15 years, as many discover the savings that can be enjoyed by traveling abroad for medical and dental work.

InternationalLiving.com recently released its 2013 Health Care Survey, looking not only at the affordability of medical services and procedures abroad, but at the cost of living and real estate values as well.

To continue reading click here.

Industry News

Experts: Here’s What Vegas Needs to Become a Health Care Hub

vegasinc.com — When medical and tourism professionals from Southern Nevada got together years ago to plot a course to bring people to Las Vegas to treat their ailments, there were plenty of skeptics.
Why would anybody come to a renowned adult playground for a medical procedure? Did Las Vegas really have enough quality physicians to be considered a medical tourism destination?

A decade later — and after two years of concentrated efforts — Las Vegas’ medical tourism community has yet to flourish. Although some people come here specifically for treatment, the valley hasn’t developed the robust industry for which leaders had hoped.

To continue reading click here.

Industry News
Caymans: Moving Ahead with Medical Tourism

compasscayman.com — Out of sight from the East End main road, behind a rise and down a dusty access road, lies a quickly growing series of concrete and metal structures.

By March next year, if everything goes according to plan, these structures will be home to Health City Cayman Islands, a medical tourism hospital with 140 beds, offering cardiac and orthopaedic care to patients from overseas.

The US$2 billion facility is the brainchild of Indian cardiologist Dr. Devi Shetty who is on a mission to make surgeries that the common man can hardly afford accessible to everyone.

The site is rapidly taking shape as Cayman’s first medical tourism hospital, which politicians and businessmen have touted as likely to become a third pillar in Cayman’s economy, alongside general tourism and financial services.

Initial reports that Dr. Shetty was looking at Cayman as home to his latest venture began emerging in late 2009. A deal with the Cayman Islands Government was signed in April 2010.

The developers of the project, who include local businessmen Gene Thompson and Harry Chandi, say it aims to eventually roll out to become a 2,000-bed hospital over the next 15 years, offering services at considerably lower prices than they are available in the United States. While initially it appeared Dr. Shetty would be looking mainly to the US market for medical tourism patients, he announced later he anticipated patients would also come from the Caribbean and Latin America.
The cardiologist, who was Mother Theresa’s doctor, has teamed up with local partners Gene Thompson and Harry Chandi.

At Dr. Shetty’s 1,000–bed Narayana Hrudayalaya heart hospital in Bangalore in southern India, patients undergo heart surgeries for as little as US$2,000. In the United States, those operations cost between US$20,000 and US$100,000.

The project in Cayman is privately funded, but the Cayman Islands Government offered a raft of concessions and waivers to make Cayman as attractive a proposition as possible for the medical facility entrepreneur, who had been also looking as other possible locations for his hospital.

The terms of the deal called for changes to or introduction of legislation, including the Health Practice Law, enabling medical staff trained in India and other overseas countries to practise in Cayman; the Tax Concessions (Amendment) Law to exempt companies from potential future taxes; the Medical Negligence (Non-Economic Damages) (Amendment) Law, which caps pain and suffering damages awarded in medical malpractice cases to $500,000; and the Human Tissue Transplant Law, which allows human organ and tissue donations and transplants to be done in Cayman.

Under the agreement, Caymanians referred from the Health Services Authority will get a 20 per cent discount on surgeries at the hospital; work permit fees for medical personnel employed at the new hospital will cost between 15 per cent and 30 per cent less than normal; and patients and their relatives will be granted a minimum of three months visitors’ visa upon arrival in Cayman.

It also gives the company a 20-year waiver of all taxes on profit, income, gains and appreciations, regardless of whether the law changes to introduce taxes on those.

The company will be exempted from paying customs or import duty on the first US$800 million it spends on equipment and medical supplies. Once that US$800 million has been exhausted, for the 15 years following that, its duty payments on equipment and supplies will not exceed 5 per cent of the cost. In the 15 years following that period, its duty payment will not exceed 10 per cent of the cost of equipment and supplies.

Also, for the first 50 years of operation, it will not pay duty on any life-saving equipment.
The site became the first in Cayman to be granted planned area development status. The Central Planning Authority granted the approval to three separate PADs in January this year. PADs are projects covering more than 40 acres, with three or more distinct uses, which are master planned as one development.

Cayman’s then premier McKeeva Bush inked the deal with Dr. Shetty in April 2010. Mr. Bush had seen first hand how one of Dr. Shetty’s hospitals operated when he travelled to Bangalore to be at guest at the inauguration of one of the entrepreneur’s new hospitals.

Dr. Shetty broke ground at the High Rock site in September last year. The first concrete was poured in February and by mid-April, the walls of the four buildings in the first phase had been erected, roofs were already in place on some of the structures and the construction work was ahead of schedule, according to construction manager Ryan Smith. Once fully operational, the hospital will offer cancer treatments, open heart and bypass surgeries, organ transplants, angioplasty and orthopaedics, Dr. Shetty has said.

The US$2 billion facility is the brainchild of Indian cardiologist Dr. Devi Shetty who is on a mission to make surgeries that the common man can hardly afford accessible to everyone.

Industry News

A New Era in Medical Travel Begins in Puerto Rico and Costa Rica

The International Medical Tourism Center (IMTC) is now offering its services on the Caribbean Island of Puerto Rico as part of its expansion from Costa Rica.

IMTC (www.medtourismcenter.com) is the evolution of the company formerly known as Medical Tours Costa Rica, which has offered medical and dental travel services in that Central American nation for almost a decade and is now bringing its experience to Puerto Rico, where U.S. citizens can travel without a passport.

Puerto Rico has unique qualities to become an attractive destination for Americans, particularly U.S. and Canadian citizens, and for companies looking for high quality healthcare at an affordable cost.
The global market for medical tourism is expected to reach $100 billion in 2013, and in Costa Rica, where IMTC already has a strong presence, the medical tourism industry has grown to nearly $300 million.

"Puerto Rico is the ideal destination for the U.S. market because of its proximity and easy access from many of the major cities, the fact that no passport is required and the healthcare system is required to follow the same standards as in the mainland U.S., but with costs that can be 30% to 70% lower for the patient," said Bill Cook, partner in the IMTC.

It is especially attractive to U.S. employers as it offers them significant savings while keeping their employees within the U.S. healthcare system for procedures such as knee and hip replacements.
"We believe Puerto Rico can become an important destination for U.S. patients in need of surgeries such as knee and hip replacements as well as dental and cosmetic services," he added.
The IMTC will provide consumers a wide variety of procedures and pricing alternatives by combining the offerings of both Puerto Rico and Costa Rica, which have excellent hospitals and bilingual doctors with vast experience and all certifications.

"With Puerto Rico, we're revolutionizing the concept of 'domestic medical tourism' by offering the best of both worlds, since patients will receive the services outside of the continental U.S. but under the same conditions they would find at home at a much better price. With the experience we bring from Costa Rica, we will provide a level of service and comfort that will be very attractive to both self-insured companies and self-funded individual patients," said Brad Cook, also a partner in the IMTC.
IMTC will also target the growing U.S. Hispanic market, because the island offers the uniqueness of a compatible culture and language but under the U.S. system.

All of the company's providers and hospitals are U.S. Board Certified and Joint Commission Accredited.

Industry News

State hospitals' income from medical tourism up 220% since 2010

According to Israel’s Health Ministry, revenues from medical tourism in state hospitals were NIS 54 million in 2009. But by 2011, they were 2.2 times higher, at NIS 119 million.

haaretz.com — Medical tourism to Israel is already growing by leaps and bounds, even before the expected upsurge in tourism that this week’s approval of the Open Skies aviation agreement is expected to produce.

A new report by the Health Ministry reveals that despite the ministry’s efforts to increase supervision of the medical tourism industry, which started in the wake of a Haaretz investigation into the matter in November 2010, medical tourism to Israel is booming. But experts warn that the business is prospering at the expense of Israeli patients.

Revenues from medical tourism in state hospitals were NIS 54 million in 2009, the report said. But by 2011, they were 2.2 times higher, at NIS 119 million.

To continue reading click here.

Upcoming Events

Second Annual Value Symposium

May 9, 2013 – John H. Ammon Medical Education Center, Newark, Delaware

The Value Institute studies healthcare with the goals of recognizing and executing strategies to achieve better health outcomes at lower costs.

The theme of the Second Annual Value Symposium is “Transforming Healthcare in America: Making the Triple Aim a Reality.” Addressing the symposium as the keynote speaker will be Don Berwick, M.D., former administrator, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and former president and CEO of the Institute for Healthcare Improvement.

To learn more or register click here.

Malaysia International Medical Tourism Fair

Malaysia International Medical Tourism Kuala Lumpur 2013

May 16-18, 2013 - Melaka BayView Hotel, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

The Malaysia International Medial Tourism Fair is a leading global healthcare conglomeration spotlighting the medical tourism industry.

Industry professionals will come together to exchange knowledge and expertise on such topics as surgery, dental, weight loss, cancer treatment, cosmetic, orthopedic, fertility, eye surgery, wellness and spa, ambulance services, insurance, complete voice examination, voice restoration programs, full health checks, PET scans, CT scans and Vagal Nerve Stimulators.

To learn more or to register click here.

Global Connected Care Conference & 4th Meditour Expo

June 5 and 6, 2013 Hyatt Regency - Orange County, CA

This two-day international conference will bring together professionals from all over the world to discuss the latest trends and opportunities in global healthcare. The conference will include presentations by some of global healthcare's biggest decision makers and thought leaders. Conference themes include:

  • Global Physician Referral Networks and Patient Care-The Next Generation of Care
  • Self-Funded Insurance Groups-Providing Healthcare Travel Alternatives
  • Business Processes and Advanced Global Healthcare Marketing Strategies
  • Integrating Global Healthcare Technologies with Medical Travel
  • Legal Issues in Global Care
  • Accessing the US healthcare market: both inbound and outbound
  • Dental Tourism
  • M-health, Telemedicine and Electronic Healthcare Information Platform

To learn more or register click here.

27th International Travel Expo

June 13-16, 2013 – Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre, Hong Kong, China

The 27th International Travel Expo in Hong Kong targets corporate trade and travel professionals, including key leaders within the global wellness and medical tourism industry.

Leading professionals in the industry from international hospitals, healthcare groups, beauty and cosmetic centers, clinics and spas, will be present as exhibitors at the expo. 50 medical tourism related exhibitors were present at the 2012 International Travel Expo.

To learn more or to register click here.

The Health Tourism Show

July 11-13, 2013 – London Olympia Grand Hall, London, UK

The 4th Annual Health Tourism Show in 2013 will bring healthcare, medical services and health resorts together on a global level to further aid in the progression of the medical tourism industry.

With an expected audience of 11,000+ individuals, this unique conference will offer attendees the opportunity to connect and engage with leading international healthcare professionals and providers.

To learn more or to register click here.

Africa Medical Executives & Medical Tourism Conference


August 28-30, 2013 - Ivory Coast, Africa

The Africa Medical Executives & Medical Tourism Conference will be comprised of up to 2,000 international delegates from over 90 different countries. Attendees will come together to dicuss general obstacles and systems that work within the medical tourism industry, as well as ways to facilitate more affordable healthcare solutions within their own communities.

The conference will also focus on important issues in relation to the African healthcare industry, specifically including, but not limited to, financial best practices, business opportunities, corporate governance, the latest techniques for cash management, performance measurement and strategies to help position companies for long-term, profitable growth in an uncertain economic environment.

To learn more or to register click here .

Indian Medical Tourism Conference 2013

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October TBD, 2013 - Bangalore/Ahmedabad, India

The Indian Medical Tourism Conference (IMTCA) will showcase the need, progress and opportunities in medical tourism, and engage in conversations about Best Practices and Ethics in Healthcare. It will also showcase how innovation in healthcare is playing a key role in the development of mid- to smaller-sized organizations that face fierce competition from their corporate counterparts.

Speakers will include:

  • Dr. David G. Vequist, CMTR - New research development in medical tourism
  • Dr. Pushpa M. Bhargava, scientist, founder of CCMB - Ethics in healthcare
  • Rajeshwar Rao, AP Chamber of Commerce - Incentives from the government
  • Dr. Michael Guiry, UIW -- Marketing medical tourism - best practices
  • Dr. Shruti Ram - Growing need for cost-effective, quality life for the aging
  • Dr. Siddharth Bhalerao, orthodontics and facial cosmetology
  • Dr. Glenn Cohen, Harvard - Legal aspects in medical tourism
  • Josef Woodman, Patient Beyond Borders
  • Armando Polanco - Corporate insurance in healthcare
  • Dr. Marcia Inhorn, Yale - Fertility tourism
  • Dr. K. S. Nayak, Nephrology -- Reverse medical tourism Dr. Udai Prakash - Innovation in orthopedics
  • Dr. Ravi Birla, University of Houston -- Biotechnology in healthcare
  • Varsha Lafargue, One HealthCare Worldwide and i-Transition The growing need of cost containment and quality enhancement in medical tourism.

To learn more or to register click here.

The Wellness Tourism Congress at the Global Spa & Wellness Summit

October 5-7, 2013 – The Oberoi, Gurgaon, New Delhi, India

Comprehensively, the annual Global Spa and Wellness Summit joins professionals together to further aid in the progression of the industry. All delegates must possess senior-level titles including CEO, president, chairman, owner, divisional SVP, etc., to ensure the highest level of expertise is the driving force behind the future of the industry.

The Wellness Tourism Congress, a subdivision of the entire summit, will take place on the first day of the event and will include ministers of tourism and wellness tourism thought leaders. This invite-only forum will focus on:

  • Developing the best strategies to promote and grow the industry
  • Developing steps to expand the growth of consumer participation
  • Developing methods for nations/regions to cost-effectively drive the most media attention
  • Developing overall industry recommendations

To learn more or to register click here.

4th Medical Tourism Saint Petersburg Exhibition


October 10-12, 2013 - Lenexpo Exhibition Complex, Saint Petersburg, Russia

This three-day exhibition will offer medical travel professionals the opportunity to gain valuable information pertaining to the latest developments, trends, services and products within various healthcare fields.

Particular areas of interest will include:

  • Medical centers
  • Plastic surgery clinics
  • Centers of aesthetic and regenerative medicine
  • Medical associations
  • Healthcare providers
  • Insurance companies
  • Specialized media

To learn more or to register click here .

Mexico: Global Summit on Medical Tourism Business


October 16-18, 2013 - Mexicali, Mexico

Taking place in Mexicali, Mexico, the Global Summit on the Medical Tourism Business will spotlight international companies specifically pertaining to medical tourism, health insurance, travel agencies and significant international brokerage opportunities.

This conference will offer attendees the opportunity to engage and interact with international, leading industry experts who wish to extend their expertise and share their visions regarding the future of medical tourism.

To learn more or to register click here.

2nd Malaysia International Healthcare Travel Expo 2013

2nd MIHTE Logo

October 20-22, 2013 - Sunway Pyramid Convention Center, Malaysia

The Malaysia Healthcare Travel Council (MHTC) is the principal organization assigned by the Malaysian government to promote the medical tourism industry and provide all information regarding available medical treatment in Malaysia to the public.

This three-day international conference will provide healthcare travel industry leaders with the connections necessary to establish and maintain long-lasting partnerships with other professionals. Attendees will be granted the opportunity to showcase and launch their innovative products and services in order to help raise awareness and bring recognition to their brands.

To learn more or to register click here.

Medical Travel Today: Opinions and Perspectives on an Industry in the Making

Medical Travel Today - the authoritative newsletter for the worldwide medical travel industry - is pleased to announce publication of a new book, "Medical Travel Today: Opinions and Perspectives on an Industry in the Making.

Featuring 40 of the newsletter's most compelling interviews from the first five years of publication, the volume chronicles the explosive growth of international medical tourism as witnessed and experienced by some of the key stakeholders and players. A must-read for anyone interested or involved in the industry.

News in Review

The Goodness Company Announces Sponsorship of Africa Medical Travel Congress
Finance.boston.com — The Goodness Company: Global Healthcare and Medical Tourism Marketing Specialists, announced corporate sponsorship and participation in the 2013 Africa Medical Travel Congress, to be held August 28-30, 2013 in Abidjan, Cote D'Ivoire, Africa (Ivory Coast).

Medical Tourism is Serious Business
Compasscayman.com — The concept of medical tourism in a nutshell is the movement of patients from expensive territories to cheaper destinations in order to undergo procedures. In this way, healthcare costs can be significantly reduced for the patient while the destinations also benefit from not simply the direct costs associated with procedures, but also a raft of secondary effects.

Ayurveda Helps Kerala Emerge as a Key Medical Tourism Hub
Business-standard.com — The centuries-old tradition of ancient Indian Ayurveda is fast turning Kerala into a global medical tourism destination, attracting holiday travelers, as well as international celebrities to the state.

The Top Five Medical Tourism Destinations in Asia are Joining Forces
Mymedholiday.com — Hoping to bring medical tourists to a variety of places in style is an alliance between the five leading medical tourism destinations in Asia, aiming to strengthen the grasp that these countries have on medical travel in the region. The idea is that everyone benefits more from a bloc of nations cooperating with, as opposed to competing against, each other.

Understanding the Benefits of Medical Travel and Satori World Medical’s Patient Experience
Myhealthpeak.com — Medical travel has gained so much popularity in recent years because it is cost-efficient and budget-friendly. It is no secret that healthcare costs in the US are impractical for many patients.

Chennai Attracts 40 Percent of Medical Tourists Visiting India: CII
Travelbizmonitor.com — Of the total number of medical tourists to India, Chennai attracts about 40 percent. The inflow of medical tourists to India has increased by 23 percent, with Chennai continuing to be the favorite destination, said CII officials.

Why is Medical Tourism in Australia Booming?
Sbs.com.au—A growing number of Australians are choosing to go overseas, especially to Asia, for medical procedures in a trend known as medical tourism. The procedures include plastic surgery and complex dental work. The motive, often, is the ability to receive treatments at a much lower cost than in Australia.

Editor's Note: The information in Medical Travel Today is believed to be accurate, but in some instances, may represent opinion or judgment. The newsletter's providers do not guarantee the accuracy or completeness of any of the information and shall not be liable for any loss or damage caused - directly or indirectly - by or from the information. All information should be considered a supplement to - and not a substitute for - the care provided by a licensed healthcare provider or other appropriate expert. The appearance of advertising in this newsletter should in no way be interpreted as a product or service endorsement by the newsletter's providers.