“A good doctor should not avoid performing surgery or prescribing a bitter pill if it is in the interest of the patient. Similarly, a wise person must not avoid taking unpleasant and difficult decisions, if they are in the interest of the people and the organization.”- Awdhesh Singh, 31 Ways of Happiness.
The medical tourism industry is booming in India due to its advancement in healthcare services, better qualified and skilled doctors, and skilled paramedical staff. Many patients outside as well as inside the country are traveling to certain hospitals for invasive and complicated surgeries and treatments to get better physically and mentally. To execute a medical trip successfully, Planning is one the prime thing that needs to be done before a trip. There are several factors which you must keep in your mind to ensure that your medical trip is smooth, hassle-free, and enjoyable. Right from researching the hospitals to booking hotels near by, everything has to be properly planned a couple of months before. Hence, here are some of the things that you should do before you plan a medical trip.
1-Research about the hospital and accreditation
Before you plan for a trip for your treatment, make sure to get every possible information about the hospital. The kind of pre-surgical services, the success rate of surgeries, financial issues, and post-operational services including facilities for the attendant or companies are to be evaluated thoroughly. In India, the National Accreditation Board of Hospitals & Healthcare Providers (NABH) is a constituent board of Quality Council of India which operate accreditation program for healthcare organizations especially hospitals. The Joint Commission International (JCI) is the major international accreditation body that operates in recognizing hospitals that has to meet and must continue to meet a minimum standard of care for international patients. A person has to see whether the hospital is accredited by any of these bodies or not. Apart from accreditation, you can do some research by asking some doctors or known persons about the quality of hospitals. You can also do online research about the hospital.
2-Research about the doctor
Apart from researching the hospital, finding out about the doctors present in the hospital is one major thing to do before you plan for medical tourism. The individual doctors present in the hospitals are not subjected to the same screening as that of the hospitals. Especially the doctor who will be performing surgery upon you. A thorough search on the internet can provide you all the possible information that you need to know about the doctor. Any past surgical failures, success rates, any illegal activity, and about their license, everything you should know before you plan to get treated by that particular doctor.
3-Find a companion or attendant
Medical tourism whether internationally or nationally demands to get aboard along with a companion or attendant. Any surgical intervention might end up with any kind of complications, hence having a near and dear with you is an utmost necessity. An attendant or a companion can provide you the moral and physical support during the healing period. They can also assist you and stay with you at a hotel nearby.
4-Focus on getting the proper treatment
While you are on a trip for your surgery, always remember why you are traveling. You will be tempted to go for poolside fun or site seeing, but engaging in all these activities means you are not giving enough time to your body to heal. This might cause serious infection and aggravate the situation. Surgery is a serious business, so make sure to prioritize your healing and your body rather than getting engaged in fun activities. Let the treatment/surgery happen in a good note and let the healing phase gets over. After you are fine and certified by the doctor for further travel, then you can go ahead with your fun activities.
5-Carry all your medical records
Make sure to carry all your previous and present medical records with you if you are considering traveling for surgery. This includes all the past medical history, lab reports, prescribed medications with a prescription, x-ray reports, etc.
6-Keep your physician in the loop
Before you finally decide for a medical tour, make sure to arrange for a talk between the surgery doctor and your physician. Your physician is the best person who knows about your health condition through and through. He/she can give the best information to another doctor regarding any relevant health details like allergies or health issues.
7-Carry your medical insurance documents
Nowadays, health treatments and surgeries have become a very costly affair. Not everybody can afford it. Also if any complications arise later post-surgery, then the cost will surge. Hence, make sure to carry all your valid health and traveling insurance with you while you travel for your surgery.
8-Book a hotel room in advance
Medical tourism demands to stay at the place for a considerable amount of time pre and post-surgery with your attendant. During the surgery and some days post-surgery you got to stay at the hospital. But after your body is healed, then you have to shift to a hotel nearby until you get full clearance from your doctor for long-distance traveling. There are many hotels available near the hospital which are made especially for patients and their attendants to stay, for example, you can book affordable hotel near AIIMS, Delhi. They give excellent services as well. If you are traveling with your partner, you can also book a couple-friendly hotel near your hospital and can spend some time. You can also book affordable rooms through reliable websites like Mistay.
9-Look for any discounts
Before you plan for any medical trip, be aware of any offers or discounts available on travel and accommodation. There is some early birds discount available in flight tickets and hotel booking. Availing these will help you in making the trip affordable.
10-Use of a medical tourism service agency
To make medical tourism hassle-free for patients, many medical tourism agents are working in many Medical Tourism Service Agencies. They can assist you in finding a country for international travelers, a good hospital, and a well-qualified and skilled surgeon for the surgery. They can also assist you in booking accommodations if necessary. These agents are experts in giving you a valid suggestion and help because they have inspected many hospitals, met the doctors and established a strong relationship with their affiliates. They are aware of the standard of healthcare and can recommend a surgeon and hospitals as per the needs of a patient.
Planning and going for a medical trip is not just a simple task. It requires a lot of effort, courage, and risk. Hence, a lot of intricate decision making has to be done at each step. You need to keep yourself updated about your own body, the hospitals, surgery, doctors, and accommodation. Hence, design an affordable and hassle-free medical trip for your own physical and mental growth.