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What Happens if You Have Surgical Complications as a Medical Tourist?
Posted by skymedicus STAFF on 7/26/2017 2:56 PM | Last Modified: August 2, 2017
While surgery or post-surgery related complications aren’t the norm, they can and do happen – and not just abroad. It’s definitely an issue here in the U.S. too. For example, research by Propublica.org analyzed surgeries across the country from 2009 through 2013, and discovered during that time 63,173 patients experienced complications involving 16,827 surgeons operating at 3,575 hospitals.
Naturally, your #1 objective as a medical tourist is to have a successful experience, and to enjoy a safe and speedy recovery. With this in mind, before looking at what happens if you have surgical complications, here are proactive steps you can take to lower your risk:
Ask questions about infection rates and other specific patient safety data. You should also ask prospective surgeons about accreditation and certification, and seek to talk with other U.S. patients who she or he has treated.
Your physician can also provide you with guidance on how to minimize your risks, such as issues around diet, rehab, travel, and so on.
The dramatic cost savings of medical tourism – which can easily run into the tens of thousands – may allow you to bring a caregiver, who can provide assistance on everything from refilling prescriptions to coordinating with surgeons and nurses abroad.
At SkyMedicus, we highly recommend that our clients purchase medical tourism insurance, which is NOT the same as standard medical travel insurance. The former is specifically associated with issues/risks around medical treatment, while the latter covers non-medical losses, such as damaged luggage, theft, etc. Having the right insurance will reduce or eliminate any financial concerns around appropriately dealing with any complications.
In its bulletin to members on medical tourism, the AARP advises: “Follow common sense, particularly regarding air travel. Long flights can magnify the risk for deep vein thrombosis. Plus, the CDC advises patients not to travel for 10 days after chest or abdominal surgery, because of airplane cabin pressure, and for seven to 10 days after cosmetic surgery.”
We also recommend that steps be taken to coordinate with airlines after weight loss surgery, such as having extra leg room, and being seated close to the flight attendant station.
If Complications Arise
While all of the above can certainly help minimize the likelihood and impact of any surgery-related complications, the fact remains that issues can arise – and again, this is not specific to geography.
In such an event, if you’re a SkyMedicus client, then you would contact us (or have your caregiver contact us). Our Concierge Team would work directly with you and your hospital to coordinate your care, and provide logistical support – such as ensuring that you had the necessary accommodations, ground transportation, changes to your travel itinerary, and more.
Providing 24/7 concierge care is one of the key ways that we help our clients get the rewarding medical tourism experience they want, while reducing their risks due to both surgical and non-surgical related complications and issues.
To learn more, contact us today for your free consultation. For more information on medical tourism and factors you need to know for a safe and successful experience, download our FREE eBook: