Medical and Dental Health Care Scenario in India with health tourism in perspective

 

India offers a range of world quality hospitals and treatments, which is substantially lower than the costs in developed countries, with comparable success rates and service levels directly in proportion to the high-value system and natural caring that comes with its heritage. Indian hospitals are becoming known internationally for standards of health care delivery comparable to the best in the world. India has the technology and the skilled super-specialists coupled with sound infrastructure and professional management, nurses and paramedical staff, which make the health care sector comparable to international standards. Foreign visitors to India are increasingly seeking Ayurveda, Dentistry and Allopathic systems of medicine these days, hoping to cure themselves, spending much lower than what they would incur in their home countries.

Dental treatment in India is becoming increasingly popular with foreign visitors. Dental treatment is sometimes not reimbursed by the national health schemes of some countries and is expensive. They can come to India and get their teeth fixed at a fraction of the cost back home. A dentist can charge US Dollars 300 to 400 for a filling. It costs only US Dollars 20 in India. A root canal is US Dollars 3,000 in the West but only US Dollars 70 to 100 in India. Dentures can cost US Dollars 1000 overseas but only US Dollars 200 in India.

Millions of people every year fly from USA, and Europe to tourist places in India for a grand holiday and DENTAL TREATMENT. Yes, it's true. The cost of dental treatment in the western countries is approximately 7-10 times more than that in India. With these high costs people have started to club their tours with dental treatments, ending up by having a grand holiday almost FREE.

In the UK, where National Health Service covers dental health, a root canal patient will have to wait for over a year. The choice would be between bearing the pain and visiting a private doctor and paying an exorbitant fee. Britishers are taking the third option. Curing their teeth while touring India.

Some medical insurance firms in the UK are taking the initiative and are coming up with plans to sell India as a destination for pleasure-cum-business tourism.

'A certain segment of tourists is mainly interested in doing the Golden Triangle. They would get their teeth done in one of these countries where the cost is less than in their home country. But if you give them India as an added destination, it is too tempting.'

The agencies are mainly focussing on the 45 to 60 age group. ''This is when dental problems begin to worry a majority of people,'' says Chadha, ''and this is also when you have more money to spend on travel.'' An additional incentive is the legal aspect. While hospitals, which do, complicated surgery and complete body profiles need legal safeguards, dental treatment has fewer medico-legal risks.

A good time to smile and help the world smile.