• 16 SEP 15
    Medical tourism patients

    Medical tourism patients

    Medical tourism patients : Motives to get medical treatment abroad

    The purpose of real medical tourists to travel abroad is to get quick and high quality medical attention or treatment.
    According to Glinos, Baeten, Helble, and Maarse (2010) medical travelers’ motives can be grouped as follows:

    1. Availability of medical and surgical treatments

    Medical tourists go abroad to receive treatment when healthcare services are not available in their country of residence, when waiting lists are too long or when they seek higher quality standards of service or a more favorable legal framework in a particular receiving country…

    2. Treatment costs

    Medical travelers also prefer to travel and be attended where treatments are less expensive than in their own country of residence.
    Some patients with no healthcare insurance policies simply cannot afford the costs of their necessary treatments at home (when vital or major surgeries, dental treatments, plastic surgery, etc…are needed).

    Healthcare in the European Community:
    On March 9th, 2011, the European Union published the Directive 2011/24/UE regulating patients’ healthcare rights within Europe so as to ease the access to cross-border sanitary assistance and ensure security and quality care at all times. This legal framework is seeking to guarantee patient mobility in the European territory, as established by the European Court of Justice, to promote cooperation between the healthcare systems of its state members.

    The Directive states the right for any European citizen to be treated in another European country, providing this treatment is available in their home country, and be reimbursed -regardless of the cost incurred and of the financial plans agreed- as they would normally be in their usual area of residence.

    3. Cultural considerations.

    Hospitality and patient care are usually related to other fundamental factors like the geographical area of influence or the cultural attachment. From a geographical point of view, the immigrants will typically seek treatment in the country they consider “familiar” or close to their heart in detriment of their country of residence.
    This is why mutual understanding and perfect communication are vital between medical travelers and the healthcare professionals in the receiving country.

    4. Perceived quality.

    Another motive for medical tourists to travel is related to the perceived quality of treatments which is defined, not only through objective factors like the certification and accreditation of specialists and of the hospital, the technological means or the specific quality assessments, etc…, but through what we call perceived quality which is linked to the individual attendance in centers by highly specialized international experts performing the most updated techniques, etc…

    5. Cross-border care and services.

    The global reorganization of some geographical international areas is leading to the creation of joint policies crossing existing borders, which makes it easier for people to travel from one country to the other and receive some kind of healthcare treatment abroad.
    As we already pointed out, Europe is a clear example of such geopolitical movements and internationalization of services with its directive on the free circulation of citizens.

    In their “U.S. Health Care Consumers” report, published in 2008, Deloitte shows that 39% of the people surveyed would consider travelling to another country, with similar quality standards to those offered in their home country, for a 50% costs reduction on an elective surgery.

    However, according to McKinsey, only 9% of the medical tourists are looking for lower cost care. 40% of them are actually seeking the most advanced techniques and therapies that are not available in their home countries, a better quality care or a quicker access to these procedures.

    Actually, only 10% of the surveyed patients declare they would travel for the sole purpose of a reduced price on the treatment.

    Medical tourism patients : Who is the medical traveler ?

    1. Social and economic standards of living

    As we already pinpointed, medical travelers do not only seek the lowest cost treatments… and some patients looking for specific non available therapies in their home countries are usually better off, like the Russian and Arabic citizens for example.

    Most retired Europeans have better standards of living because they have no financial charges to face and because their countries cover most of their social and healthcare expenses.

    According to Hawkins, people of the middle and high social classes rate higher some services like patient attention and information given by the healthcare providers or the comfort of the premises during their stay.

    2. Age groups

    Many reports like those published by Lunt and Carrera in 2010 show that the medical tourist is usually a middle-aged patient with about 40 to 55 years old or more.

    Older medical tourists are usually better off and more disengaged to travel than the other age groups.
    When these tourists travel, they plan longer journeys than other traditional patients.
    Furthermore, senior patients are more sensitive to factors like safety, social and political stability of the receiving country, infrastructures and they also consider the familiarity of the receiving culture with their own. All these factors add up in their perception of the service.

    3. Stays and costs incurred in the receiving country

    Medical tourism patients usually spend between 6 to 10 times more than other traditional tourists.

    According to international experts in Medical Tourism, these patients usually stay longer too at the hotel or at the hospital (between 10 and 20 days on the average).

    This average stay will eventually depend on the kind of procedure performed: patients with quite complex treatments (major surgeries…) will need stay longer than the outpatients, for example. However, in some cases, outpatients’ stays can be longer too: fertility treatments, minor surgery or check-ups appointments can be grouped together on a few days to meet patients’ needs.

    At Vithas Xanit International Hospital, 40% of our patients are foreign.
    Our philosophy is based on quality, safety, satisfaction and comfort.
    Vithas Xanit is accredited by the Joint Commission International.
    In most cases, surgery is performed with minimally invasive (MIS) techniques to guarantee a shorter and more favorable postoperative recovery, enabling thus our international patients to return as soon as possible to their home countries.
    Our “International patients Service” provides individual attention and care to all international patients, 24 hours a day.
    It works hand in hand with the other hospital services to ensure an individualized treatment and excellent medical care to all patients and their relatives during their stay.

    (based on: EOI)

Dr. Radua Kamal Salah

Thank you for the kindness, good humour that you have shown as well as the wonderful food. This certainly helps to make a sick person feel better and have a speedy recovery.


Medical Specialities

  • Hair Transplantation Unit

    At Vithas Xanit we offer the most advanced technology for hair transplantation surgery and for non surgical treatments. We attend both men and women, suffering from any capillary loss, either on the scalp or in any other body area (beard, moustache, eyebrows or eyelashes).

  • Cosmetic Surgery and Anti Aging

    Cosmetic Surgery and Anti Aging

    At Hospital Vithas Xanit Internacional, the Cosmetic and Plastic Surgery Unit helps patients to feel good about themselves.
    The latest medical technology and our doctors and surgeons’ perfectionism are key factors in terms of patient satisfaction with the results of their cosmetic surgery or treatment. Liposuction, breast enlargements, rhinoplasty and tummy tucks are among the most applied treatments.

  • Dental surgery and Cosmetic Dentistry

    Dental surgery and Cosmetic Dentistry

    Our dentists carry out your dental surgery and/or dental treatment quickly and efficiently.
    At Hospital Vithas Xanit Internacional, we guarantee high quality dental treatments such as dental surgery (dental implants, sinus lift) or cosmetic dentistry treatments (dental crown, dental bridge, veneers, dentures, etc.).

  • Orthopedic Surgery and Trauma

    Orthopedic Surgery and Trauma

    Orthopedic surgery quality and prices vary from country to country and Spain combines the best of both worlds.
    The most requested health tourism orthopedic surgeries are hip replacement and knee replacement. At Hospital Vithas Xanit Internacional, these procedures are performed using arthroscopy and Minimally Invasive Techniques (MIS).

  • Heart Surgery

    Heart Surgery

    Our Vithas Xanit Cardiology Area is an international benchmark for heart diseases. It boasts cardiologist and specialist heart surgeon on conditions such as arrhythmia, implanting pacemakers, angioplasty, heart bypass, repair to the aortic valve and mitral valve, heart valve replacement and percutaneous mitral valve repair.

  • Obesity treatment and Bariatric Surgery

    Obesity treatment and Bariatric Surgery

    Obesity is considered to be one of Western countries’ major health issues and consequently the demand for bariatric surgery is on the up, particularly concerning gastric banding and gastric bypass
    Our surgeons have been widely trained in this area, with over 20 years’ experience in all bariatric surgeries. They are all done by laparoscopy.

  • Digestive Surgery – Gallbladder Surgery

    Digestive Surgery – Gallbladder Surgery

    The General Surgery and Digestive System Service at Hospital Vithas Xanit Internacional can boast the most advanced technology and latest generation equipment for treating a wide variety of digestive pathologies such as in gallbladder. This service offers advanced laparoscopy surgery as the main way of tackling most surgical pathologies.

  • Urology – TURP

    Urology – TURP

    The Hospital Vithas Xanit Internacional Urology service employs European Board of Urology-certified urologists. This unit offers patients the latest diagnosis techniques, treatments and procedures. At our International Hospital, Transurethral Resection of the Prostate (TURP) is the most frequently used technique to treat benign prostatic hyperplasia.

  • Vascular Surgery – Phlebology

    Vascular Surgery – Phlebology

    Venous insufficiency is a chronic pathology that affects one in three adults. It is characterised by a deficient blood return in the lower limbs.
    Our International Hospital medical team has wide-ranging experience in sclerotherapy with micro-foam, varicose vein removal with endovascular laser, ambulatory phlebectomy and the C.H.I.V.A technique, among others.

  • Spinal Surgery

    Spinal Surgery

    Slipped discs and spinal stenosis usually affect the lumbar and cervical spine and the spinal surgery most requested by our international patients is laminectomy, as well as arthroplasty of the intervertebral disk and spinal fusion.

  • Ophtalmology and laser eye surgery

    Ophtalmology and laser eye surgery

    Our international hospital uses a new femtosecond laser, the most technologically advanced refractive surgery system currently available. It can correct long-sightedness and refractive defects such as short sightedness, astigmatism or hypermetropia in a single operation.
    The most popular ophthalmology surgeries among our international patients are laser eye surgery, glaucoma and cataract surgery.

  • Imaging Diagnosis

    Imaging Diagnosis

    Radiology and nuclear medicine are medical specialties that focus on the diagnosis of diseases through the interpretation of images. They provide fundamental information for the Medical Check-Up Unit. At Hospital Vithas Xanit Internationalthese two specialities are integrated into a single service in order to provide the maximum reliability and diagnostic coordination.

  • Medical check up

    Medical check up

    Evolving health concepts, greater longevity and technological developments mean that it is increasingly important to detect and make an early diagnosis on diseases and prevent them.
    Therefore, periodic health check-up is the most efficient and secure way of controlling your health.

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology – Hysterectomy

    Obstetrics and Gynecology – Hysterectomy

    Various conditions might lead to a hysterectomy or uterine ablation: uterine cancer, cervical cancer, ovarian cancer, uterine fibroids, endometriosis, uterine prolapse, adenomyosis.
    This surgery can be traumatising for women and so the psychology department at Hospital Vithas Xanit Internacional helps women through this process.