Argentine medical tourism grows: it generates 300 million dollars a year

The prices that are handled in the local market drive the growth of this sector.Compared to the United States, operations in Argentina cost up to four times less.

A family in Bolivia fished quietly in their boat. When lighting a cigarette, a strong explosion by gas accumulation in the area, produced important burns. One of them, of greater gravity, had to be attended by a specialized institution. The destination chosen by the Bolivian government itself, which paid for all expenses, was the German Hospital in Buenos Aires. The patient, who only spoke Quechua, recovered and returned to his country in a few months.

It was the life of a teenager in Venezuela who needed a double transplant to survive: kidney and liver. His family immediately consulted in the United States. They had gotten an international NGO to cover all the expenses. The case was very delicate and was dismissed by the American doctors themselves. They quickly sought alternatives. The patient was attended a few days later by the Austral Hospital. Two years later, the young man enjoys good health with his parents.

In recent years, Argentina began to position itself internationally in terms of medical tourism. According to the Medical Tourism Index, today it is among the top five countries in Latin America , behind Mexico, Panama, Costa Rica and Colombia.

For more than five years, Argentina’s leading medical institutions have been working together to formulate strategies and action plans to address a growing international market. Thus was born the Argentine Chamber of Medical Tourism, which now expands in a federal way to the different provinces of the country, which has signed cooperation agreements with the cities of Buenos Aires and Rosario, and the provinces of Córdoba and Salta.

Patients of Latin American, European, Canadian and American origin come to receive various treatments. Medical checkups, assisted fertilization, stem cell treatments, cosmetic surgeries and dental implants are among the most frequent. In these cases, the payment is usually made by the patient himself, taking advantage of the local experience and the cost advantage. But others, such as the cases mentioned above, come to the country from the hands of governments or medical insurance because of the lack of complexity in their countries of origin.

The annual volume of patients is maintained in the order of 14,000 people, including companions. The stay that is usually longer than a trip of another type, generates an estimated cost of US $ 15,000 per case. Today it represents an annual income of US $ 210 million and this figure is expected to climb to US $ 500 million by 2020.

It is to highlight the good prices that the local market handles compared to others, such as the United States where a coronary bypass is paid $ 144,000, while in Argentina costs $ 24,000, 60% less. For its part, a gastric belt with US intervention costs 30,000 and in Argentina 7,000; A knee replacement, 50,000 versus 11,000 in the local market. Other operations that are usually performed are aesthetic: local clinics charge $ 4,000 for breast implants and $ 12,000 for breast implants; A lifting 4,300 and 15,000, respectively.

Some medical institutions in our country reach important levels of billing in this segment, with figures that exceed 3 million dollars annually.

The characteristic of medical tourism is spending 5 to 9 times more than traditional tourism. In addition, 75% of travelers arrive accompanied.

On a global scale, there are about 55 million medical tourists , 60% of whom are Medical Wellness (MW) and 38% travel for aesthetics and 62% for curative procedures. In the country, according to the information released by the Argentine Chamber of Medical Tourism ( CIAPSA ), MW is intended for interdisciplinary wellness services, such as spa treatments and weight loss programs, representing an additional 40% of income “.

2nd Argentine Congress of International Medical Tourism

On June 12 and 13, 2017 will be held the 2nd Argentine Congress of InternationalMedical Tourism , at The Brick Hotel Buenos Aires . It will feature more than 20 speakers – national and international – and nearly 500 participants from around the world.

During the two days, we will work on the strengths of prestige, medical infrastructure and technology, first class academic training, wealth, variety of tourist beauties, ethics and security with which Argentina counts.

The intention of this meeting organized by INPROTUR , CIAPSA, TURISMO BUENOS AIRES and CAT , is to relate to the different actors involved in patient care, counseling and international representation, to increase the positioning of Argentina as a health destination.

These meetings are framed in business meetings to continue projecting Argentina in the medical tourism market, in this sense from the Chamber they point out that it is expected a significant attendance of medical institutions, hotels and travel agencies.

It is to emphasize that the promotion of medical tourism receives special attention in our country due to its capacity for the generation of direct and indirect employment, in addition to international currencies.

The Argentine Chamber of Medical Tourism is composed of the most prestigious institutions. More information at: www.caturismomedico.org

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