Patients Without Borders: Understanding Medical Travel
Medical anthropology 2010 Oct; 29(4): 336-43
The rapidly growing medical travel industry has implications for the health systems of both sending and receiving countries. This article outlines the political economy of the industry and the potential opportunities and disadvantages it poses for access, equity, and the right to health. Although the trade carries economic benefits for countries receiving foreign medical patients, it comes at a cost to the provision of public health, through distortions in the health workforce and the development of two-tiered health systems. Inequalities and failures in the health systems of sending countries largely drive the need to travel for care.
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