Healthcare business is becoming a good source of income for the Philippine economy. Medical care for foreigners and even health care tourism is rising. Foreigners are coming to the country to take advantage of the relatively good care at a great price, compared to services offered in developing countries. For those without insurance in the developed world, the Philippines offers an affordable choice for some routine operations and surgeries and procedures. Medical tourism is a rising business worth a over $100 billion USD worldwise, and expected to rise in 2012. The socialist and mandatory bill put into place in the U.S. by Hussein Obama has driven the cost up for Americans, which should also help drive more patients to the Philippines when people can’t afford healthcare at home. The Philippines received a total of $1.3 billion dollars between 2006 and 2010 from medical tourism, as they call it. Among this rise in care for foreigners, investigators say the risk for medical scams has also increased, and many are targeting foreigners.
Healthcare is expensive in the U.S. and since the costly “reforms” made by Obama administration, the people are looking for more affordable options. Socialist and mandatory healthcare has driven up the costs for businesses, insurance providers, and patients. Many Americans are willing to travel half way around the world to find good spots for affordable healthcare.
The Philippines, Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand are making an effort to attract foreigners who are seeking quality medical care for cheap. Some hospitals are even adding English to their websites and adapting hospitals with hotel accommodations for families and patients visiting from other countries. Such patients typically pay in cash, and are an excellent source of revenue. Some Filipino healthcare and hospital managers are even considering partnering with India.
But as always, there’s the other “dark” side of the story, as corruption in the Philippines is high and involves levels of the government administration and the health department. A lot of cyber criminals have dedicated their time to steal money from the sick offering false promises and selling medicines, based in the ancient traditions of healing, making people believe they can stop their real medications, stop seeing their doctors while actually getting worse or even death.
Women in an urge to get that perfect body submit themselves to any trick available to lose weight or have surgery where needed in order to look like Hollywood movie stars. Philippines private investigators see a high risk of fraud in this scenario. Some fake websites offer promised surgeries for cheap and ask for a down payment to reserve the surgery. Websites can appear very real and even use the names of reputable hospitals in Manila. In other cases, a person may put information on the internet or call hospitals asking about surgeries, and then someone claiming to be a doctor will contact the potential victim regarding the surgery. A schedule is reserved and the patient will need to make the first payment, and then the money is gone. In other cases, in the extreme, someone with little training can actually attempt to perform the procedure.
As the fraud escalates, some clinics offer miracle solutions and even providing services within un-qualified surgeons performing surgeries that may even costs their patients’ lives. If you’re thinking of having a procedure done in the Philippines, experts and law enforcement agree, that reputable Philippines background checks are strongly recommend to lower your risk.
All the best,
© 2011 S. Birch