The high costs of healthcare in industrialized countries, the improved standards in foreign countries, the lower costs of air travel and internet marketing have made medical tourism a popular trend nowadays. More and more people from all over the world are traveling to other countries not only as tourists who come for sightseeing and shopping but also as patients who come for medical services such as cosmetic plastic surgery.
In the Philippines, both local and foreign patients who otherwise couldn’t afford plastic surgery benefit from the highly favorable exchange rate. Lower overhead costs and professional fees makes it possible for surgeons to charge a fraction of the cost of the same procedures in the United States, U.K. and other countries.
The cost savings are significant. For example, if the average surgeon’s fee for eyelid surgery in the U.S. is $2,500, in the Philippines, a qualified surgeon will charge only $600 to $1,500. For liposuction, surgeon’s fees in the U.S. average $2,000 per area. In the Philippines, it is around $800 for the first area and $500 for succeeding areas. Anesthesiologist’s fees and facility costs are also much lower.
Affordable airfare and hotel rates are available and the internet can be the quickest and easiest way to compare rates and find the best deals and specials. Search for “cheap airfare to Philippines” and you’ll find various sites that can give you rates for different airlines for any time of the year. For example, you can get a round trip ticket from Los Angeles to Manila for less than $1000. With modest hotel rates at $45 – 65 a day (with discounts for weekly rates), patients can combine having a vacation in a tropical country with affordable, quality elective plastic surgery.
The Philippines’ medical services can rival the best in the world and there are qualified and well-trained doctors who have had formal training in plastic and reconstructive surgery, have acquired their postgraduate or fellowship training from well-known institutions in the U.S.A. and have been mentored by leading American plastic surgeons. They speak English fluently ensuring the good communication between surgeon and patient that is essential during consultation. These plastic surgeons may charge relatively affordable fees, especially if they practice in Asian countries like the Philippines, where cost of living expenses are low and if they can keep overhead costs low by having modest outpatient surgery clinics. But think twice if the cosmetic surgery provider you’re considering charges much lower than the authentic plastic surgeons in the same country. Although price is definitely a factor when considering elective surgery, patients seeking quality medical care at very affordable prices should know that choosing the right surgeon is the single most important decision they will make. When price is the primary factor for choosing a plastic surgeon, risks increase. The success of your surgery is largely dependent on your choice of surgeon. His professional qualifications and experience should be your main consideration in selecting your plastic surgeon.
Prices stated as of May, 2005