HOUSTON (TIP): Global medical tourism market will rise to $ 32.5 billion by 2019 on account of rising healthcare costs in developed countries, like the US and improved standards of healthcare technology and services in nations like India and China, a research says.

The surging costs of healthcare and medical insurance in the US will give a rise to global medical tourism which will register a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 17.9 per cent from 2013 to 2019, according to the research titled “Medical Tourism Market (India, Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, Mexico, Brazil, Taiwan, Turkey, South Korea, Costa Rica, Poland, the Philippines and Dubai).

The research has been conducted by Transparency Market Research (TMR), a US-based market intelligence company, which has pegged the current medical tourism market at $ 10 billion.

Factors like ageing population, adoption of newer technologies to treat various products and better exchange rates in the economy as a whole push the case for its rise.

The possibility of economic crisis in developed nations which has led to decrease in disposable incomes has also added to its growth.

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Better pricing for cosmetic surgeries and shorter waiting period for treatment is also likely to accelerate the growth in the sector.

Besides escalating healthcare costs, many medical and surgical procedures are no longer covered by insurance. This has made it imperative for Americans to seek alternative, affordable options for their healthcare treatments.

One such option is medical tourism or travelling to foreign countries that offer exceptionally good medical services at affordable rates.

Today more Americans fly out to places like India, China, Malaysia, Thailand, Singapore among others to get themselves treated in the high-tech hospitals at a fraction of costs demanded by hospitals in US, the research said.

Hospitals and healthcare facilities in various south east Asian countries, especially India and China, often match or even surpass the quality of healthcare available in US-based hospitals, it added.

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