Insurance Companies Adapting to Trends by Adopting Medical Tourism

Document Type


Publication Date

Fall 9-2017


Healthcare costs in the United States (U.S.) are rising every year and patients are seeking new ways to control their expenditures and save money. Going abroad to receive health care is a cheaper alternative than receiving the same or similar care at home. Insurance companies are beginning to realize the benefits of medical tourism for both themselves and their beneficiaries, and have therefore started to introduce medical tourism plans for their as an option for their beneficiaries. This research study explores the benefits and risks of medical tourism, and examines the U.S. insurance market’s reaction to the trend of increasing medical tourism. The U.S. medical tourism industry mirrors that of the United Kingdom in recent years, with more patients seeking care abroad than are coming into the U.S. Insurance companies have introduced new plans providing the option of traveling abroad to countries such as India and Costa Rica. Medical tourism is gaining popularity with U.S. residents and insurance companies are recognizing this trend.


This is the authors’ peer-reviewed final manuscript submission. The version of record is available from the publisher at https://doi.org/10.1097/HCM.0000000000000179. Copyright © 2017 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.

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