The term medical tourism is a bit of a misnomer as it downplays the serious nature of choosing a doctor – whether in your home country or abroad. The questions below, while not exhaustive, give you some guidance on choosing your doctor wisely.
What are your academic credentials?
Look for specialized training in the chosen field, such as plastic surgery / cosmetic surgery, bariatrics, orthopedics, fertility training, prosthodontics, etc. Many doctors have international training in the US and Europe and may be American-board certified which helps to put US patients at ease. High-quality doctors collaborate internationally and regionally so also, think twice before underestimating a surgeon if they have graduated from a reputable medical school overseas. If you’re not sure – ask MedVoy!
Are you accredited?
International accreditation for providers include: Joint Commission International JCI, Trent Accreditation Scheme (TAS) and International Organization for Standardization (ISO), while the International Board of Medicine and Surgery (IBMS) certifies physicians. Furthermore, many countries also have stringent national standards that follow international guidelines. One example is Colombia, where hospitals follow international non-profit ICONTEC standards that are identical to ISQua standards. Hence, all accredited hospitals in Colombia are subsequently accredited by ISQua. Malaysia also has the Malaysian Society for Quality in Health (MSQH) that acts as an independent, not-for-profit organization to ensure safety and quality.
How many of these surgeries have you performed?
Experience is one of the most important elements towards a successful outcome. Whether the doctor performs the surgery every day or a few times a year is significant! Do they specialize in a certain area? A cosmetic surgeon such as MedVoy’s partner Denver Cosmetic Surgery that specializes in the aging face is going to give you a better outcome than a dilettante. Find out how many of these surgeries the doctors has performed. Also, make sure that the actual surgeon will be performing the surgery and not a subordinate.
What materials do you use?
There is a wide range in quality in the materials used – so ask! Are they from a reputable company like Johnson and Johnson or Boston Scientific? Do they provide a guaranty? MedVoy’s partner Travel and Smile in Peru will uses German-made noble metal crowns and that are the standard in the US and Germany and gives a lifetime guarantee on quality. Make sure that you know this before you are actually there.
This list does not cover all the questions which is why it’s important to work with a well-established medical tourism company.