What if it were covered by your health insurance plan?
From Health Leaders Media (h/t to Acad Ronin):
South Carolina-based Companion Global Healthcare added three Singapore hospitals to its network. The deal now allows Americans access to medical and surgical services at ParkwayHealth operated hospitals at pre-negotiated, in-network rates lower than those of U.S. hospitals.Upon reflection, if the gubmnt insurance in Canada used the savings to pay my way for a holiday in Singapore, I might consider going there for many procedures....but not for such things as lithotripsy, where the flight itself could be pretty agonizing.
The deal between ParkwayHealth and Companion Global Healthcare is a step in the maturation of the medical travel industry, notes David Williams, consultant and cofounder of MedPharma Partners LLC.
“Conceptually, hospitals halfway around the world will now have the same status to members as those just down the street, so that’s a big step,” he said. “It may be a bit of a wake-up call to the local hospitals in South Carolina, putting them on notice that they are facing a broader set of competitors.”
Of course this will never happen in Canada, where the gubmnt insurance would face political backlashes if they started shipping patients to Singapore. Educating politicians and voters about comparative advantage seems like an impossible dream, as we witnessed with Obama and Clinton during the Pennsylvania primary.
But in the private sector, look for more of this type of health care in the future, especially among insureres who offer their clients some flexibility in their health care plans.