Medical Tourism, Dental Tourism and Global Healthcare

Posts Tagged ‘Medical Treatment Abroad

“Kosansh to doctors, hospitals and patients is what cell phones are to others – the more you use it, the more you see the value.  There is no second option to globalization of health care, second opinion services for complicated ailments and tele-medicine for remote medical procedures management”. – Roshan Shah – Founder & CEO, Kosansh

I am pleased to announce the launch of “Kosansh” – a medical tourism social network. While we have not fully hashed out all the bugs but we thought its best to give the tool in the hands of real users.

Kosansh gives tremendous power in hands of hospitals and doctors worldwide who want to market their services. Without any need of a programmer or a webmaster, a hospital administrator or a doctor can easily populate content like news, blog, hospital/doctor profile, testimonials(videos), pictures or even answer health queries in health communities. Doctors and Hospitals do good work but they don’t have a platform to showcase their work to international community. Kosansh provides exactly that – a very strong marketing tool.

Hospitals can add their room pictures, room facilities, hospital facilities, treatments they specialize in, doctors who perform a particular surgery, etc

Portal has capabilities for Medical, Dental, Cosmetic, Wellness and Ayurveda(to be added this week) facilities to be a part of Kosansh.

Room price, Surgery Price in USD can be added and changed at any time by them. Hospitals can also announce tele-medicine services while specialist doctors can announce their offerings of second opinion services.

Hospitals can also optionally add their tie-ups with health insurance companies. For any surgery, they can upload the make, model and year of the equipment they use for this surgery. This way patient will be able to gauge whether they are operated by latest equipment.

Patients will be able to search on various parameters like cost, accreditation, overall patient rating of hospital, facilities, specialization and any of the above parameters. The search results can be filtered further down to help patient nail down to few options for decision making.

Second Opinion services by individual doctors will save patients a lot of time of long queues at doctors. They will also be assured that the best doctors at any part of the world whom they select will be reviewing their file. Kosansh’s “Patient Vault” allows patient to share their medical records electronically with Doctors as well as schedule a telephonic appointment with doctor.

There is also a job board and internal help desk system. Kosansh team provides 18 hours a day 7 days a week support.

In the initial beta launch, we are offering 3 months free membership to hospitals and doctors. Pricing for hospital and doctors start at $250 each annually and goes all the way up to $15,500 (which also includes an offshore full time content writer for the hospital who adds content in kosansh to market hospital services, publish content, upload their testimonials, answer health queries in co-ordination with hospitals, etc)

We are working very hard to populate FAQ and other sections of the site and continue to fix bugs and add new features in the portal.

We are soon going to announce our international network partners who can provide hospitals and doctors training, manpower and support to handle international patients in their respective countries.

We involved 5 hospitals and 20 patients to test our product and we realized that there is lot more to be done. Doctors/Patients seem to be technically challenged when it comes to web. Things that appear obvious for an average web user, doctors and hospital admin staff found it bit difficult.

As a result, we had to make changes to our UI and here is what we have come across. While we have successfully tested all the features of the product and are very excited about our overall accomplishment, we certainly think that it will take our team nearly 2 months to bring in the usability improvements and overhaul the entire site.

Here is the new homepage layout

Kosansh - Medical Tourism Portal - Home Page Layout

Kosansh - Medical Tourism Portal - Home Page Layout

Here is the layout for  a new section of Health Communities

Health Communities Section of Kosansh

Health Communities Section of Kosansh

We obviously want to launch it after we run it through these hospitals/patients again and also then have few more hospitals/patients test it.

Our SEO team is already on board and despite the fact that we still have not gone live, our servers are getting decent hits http://alexa.com/siteinfo/kosansh.com and we also have a good following on twitter http://twitter.com/kosansh

Kosansh Answers :

Patients who are not yet members of the portal can ask questions about their ailments. They will get replies from Kosansh community i.e Member Hospital Representative , Member Doctors, Member Patients, Non Member Doctors, as well as Non Member Patients.

Kosansh Answers

Kosansh Community pages allow patients/doctors/hospitals to join particular community of their interest and ask/answer questions.

Kosansh Communities

Here is a detail of community page i.e in this case “Fitness Community”

Kosansh Community Detail Page

April 13, 2009

Ahmedabad, India

“Medical Tourism” is a terminology that is used when a patient from a home country, travels to a foreign country for medical, dental or cosmetic treatment. Some patients also visit exotic destinations of the foreign country along with their procedures. Medical Tourism Industry it estimated to cross $3.3 trillion by 2017. When you consider surround opportunities(language translators, food, guides, concierge services), the numbers would be much higher.

Thailand today leads Medical Tourism industry by attracting highest number of patients followed by India.

Vibrant Gujarat Summit 2009 saw an unprecedented investment pledge in Gujarat with dignitaries from 50 countries looking to invest in Gujarat – the most industrialized state of India. According to government sources MOUs worth Rs. 12 lakh crore ( US $240 billion) were signed
http://www.vibrantgujarat.com/mous_announcement.html.

Noteworthy amongst these are Tourism MOUs http://www.vibrantgujarat.com/mous/mous_tourism.html
and Healthcare MOUs http://www.vibrantgujarat.com/mous/mous_healthcare.html.

Besides these over Rs 1500 crore (US $300 million) worth of MOU’s have been signed specifically in Medical Tourism sector in the state of Gujarat. These MOUs have been signed when the whole world is fighting recession. Ahmedabad – India’s 7th largest city is getting a lot of attention as a “recession proof” city.

10 large corporate hospitals are already operational in Ahmedabad. To get an update on what state’s hospitals are doing to address Medical Tourism market, same set of questions were forwarded to the executives of key hospitals in Gujarat to get their viewpoints on Medical Tourism in India. Here are responses:

Manjul Joshipura – Apollo Hospitals, Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India

http://www.apolloahd.com

Q1 What are some of the common reasons for people to engage in medical tourism?
Ans Lack of availability of tertiary care locally, Economic reasons and Long waiting lists
Q2 Given this current global economic climate, would you anticipate medical tourism to take a hit for many parts of Asia, including India?
Ans

Very much so

Q3 Where do you see the future of medical tourism on the host country’s health care systems?
Ans

Very bright

Q4 Please share India’s experiences in medical tourism
Ans

Very positive so far -expat Indians NRI and NRG population are the biggest customers.

Q5 How can locals benefit from medical tourism in their country?
Ans

Employment generation in hospital and hospitality industry.

Q6 Do they also enjoy the improvements in health care facilities and services?
Ans

The local population also enjoy New Technology and equipment are brought to the country to keep pace
with medical tourism business.Outcomes and quality are getting better in health care.

Q7 But are there challenges to a country engaging in medical tourism? eg. especially in the instance of
after-care following surgeries, follow-ups etc?
Ans

Lack of Hospital Accreditation, Weak malpractice laws and follow up care issues

P.A. Joseph – Muljibhai Patel Urological Hospital, Nadiad, Gujarat, India

http://www.mpuh.org

Q1 What are some of the common reasons for people to engage in medical tourism?
Ans Lack of availability of tertiary care locally, Economic reasons and Long waiting lists. Common reasons are (1) long waiting period in their home countries for specialized treatment (2) world-class medical facilities and highly trained medical professionals are available in India, (3) Low cost; treatment in India is possible at a fraction of cost when compared to their home countries, and (4) plenty of exotic tourist destinations exist in India to suit diverse interests of tourists.
Q2 Given this current global economic climate, would you anticipate medical tourism to take a hit for
many parts of Asia, including India?
Ans

The reasons why people engage in medical tourism are such that they are mostly recession-proof. If at all, any negative effect due to the global economic climate is likely to be negligible.

Q3 Where do you see the future of medical tourism on the host country’s health care systems?
Ans

It will prove to be good for the patients in India also.

Q4 Please share India’s experiences in medical tourism
Ans

Hospitals in India who are looking towards inflow of patients from abroad are creating and likely to create further the necessary infrastructure, to meet the expectations of global clients. This will lead to creation of
even better facilities being set up in India to cater to the growing demands

Q5 How can locals benefit from medical tourism in their country?, Do they also enjoy the improvements in
health care facilities and services?
Ans

Obviously, locals who can afford such facilities will have greater options to choose from. From the point of view of hospitals in India, they will be able to achieve optimum capacity utilization.

Q6 But are there challenges to a country engaging in medical tourism? eg. especially in the instance of after-care following surgeries, follow-ups etc?
Ans

These challenges are not country-specific. The health care industry will find ways to tackle those challenges as they may arise.

Rajiv Sharma – Sterling Hospitals, Gujarat, India

http://www.sterlinghospitals.com

Q1 What are some of the common reasons for people to engage in medical tourism?
Ans Availability of best in class treatment at fraction of cost compared to West
Q2 Given this current global economic climate, would you anticipate medical tourism to take a hit for many parts of Asia, including India?
Ans

We are not witnessing any slowdown in no. of patients for medical tourism.

Q3 Where do you see the future of medical tourism on the host country’s health care systems? Please share
India’s experiences in medical tourism
Ans

It could be a USD 2 BN industry by 2012 primary for tertiary heath care

Q4 How can locals benefit from medical tourism in their country?, Do they also enjoy the improvements in
health care facilities and services?
Ans

Yes, as the hospitals have to upgrade their overall quality of health care delivery.

Q6 But are there challenges to a country engaging in medical tourism? eg. especially in the instance of
after-care following surgeries, follow-ups etc?
Ans

Most of the patients for surgical cases stay over in India post surgery. There are Follow up visits
also from the patients

Animish Chokshi – Krishna Heart Hospital, Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India

http://www.krishnaheart.org/

Q1 What are some of the common reasons for people to engage in medical tourism?
Ans a) Prize Difference b) Doctors expertise and experience level. c) Old ties to country d) Direct flights in major centers
Q2 Given this current global economic climate, would you anticipate medical tourism to take a hit for many parts of Asia, including India?
Ans

On the contrary since because of layoffs globally as many have lost employer backed insurance, this
segment will grow. We are seeing many NRI’s and Gujaratis coming with whole families for travel/pleasure. This is unforeseen.

Q3 Where do you see the future of medical tourism on the host country’s health care systems?
Ans

As more patients are treated in India and more revenue will flow in. There should be less of government regulation and if so, Industry is poised for exponential growth.

Q4 Please share India’s experiences in medical tourism
Ans

We have been transparent with patients and right from their initiating contact,we have been giving unbiased recommendations. We are looking more to cure their ailment first before we look at the money. Krishna Hospital has been seeing increased number of patients including white americans, europeans.

Q5 How can locals benefit from medical tourism in their country?
Ans

Better medical care, better employment options.

Q6 Do they also enjoy the improvements in health care facilities and services?
Ans

With improved facilities and quality of care, locals will get more options to choose from.

Q7 But are there challenges to a country engaging in medical tourism? eg. especially in the instance of
after-care following surgeries, follow-ups etc?
Ans

First shock foreigners get is as soon as they land at the airport. The infrastructure is different, language spoken is different, accent is different, traffic rules are different, weather, food everything is different. But over couple of days, they tend to settle down and then the Indian  hospitality, personal attention and honesty wins their trust for a long long time. Many patients who go back to their home countries want to come back to India to know more about the Indian civilization

This was an exercise taken by Kosansh – http://www.kosansh.com team as a part of CEO Mr. Shah’s interview with Singapore Radio (MediaCorp Newsplex) about Growth of Medical Tourism in India.

Kosansh – http://www.kosansh.com is a upcoming medical tourism portal with unique features that gives hospitals, patients full control on the content with integrated hospital, doctor ratings, patient vault for sharing medical records, a Q&A forum for peer to peer assistance on particular ailment and more.

If you want to become a partner of Kosansh to get your local hospitals be a part of this portal email your details to partnerships (@) kosansh (dot) com. Please list your current business activities/investment capacity to run an independent marketing operation in your region to sign up your clinics, hospitals as well as help international patients to get treatment in your local centers.



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  • Jens Knab: Im also involved in the dental tourism industry. Our dental clinic is located in the Philippines, we are offering dental implants, combined cases, fix
  • Debbie Norwitz: Volunteer4Good promotes volunteer travel. Is there a volunteer aspect in any area of medical tourism that you've spotted? I will be devoting a section
  • Dr.Akshi shah: M.T is expanding.....growing like anything in india..... I want to ask a question...I'm pursuing MBA in healthcare management. In 2nd yr we have to