Tuesday March 20, 2018

Medical online startups attracting foreign patients to India

Image source: keweenawhealth.com

New Delhi: India, ‘the pharmacy of the developing world’, sees foreign patients flocking to the country due to its specialised and cost-effective medical care. This has resulted in the mushrooming of online startups that help foreign nationals find the best treatment in the country.

One such medical tourism start-up, PlanMyMedicalTrip.com, which was started nine years back, is now serving as a one-stop solution provider for foreign medical tourists.

“We have patients coming in from all over the world. However, Africa, GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council) and CIS (Commonwealth of Independent States) regions contribute towards the sector by as much as 30 percent of the total inflow,” said Anurav Rane, CEO, PlanMyMedicalTrip.com.

“There are a lot of different medical and surgical options for medical tourists coming to India. Primarily, medical tourists get elective procedures done such as cosmetic surgery, hip and knee replacements, dental procedures and infertility treatments,” he told reporters.

According to a white paper by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and Grant Thornton, the Indian medical tourism market is set to touch $8 billion by 2020, up from the current $3 billion.

Saed Saber from Egypt recently came to India for knee replacement. “I wanted to get my knee replacement done but was confused as to how I should go about it. Since options in my country are limited with a high price tag for treatment, I started exploring for options, that is when I came to know about PlanMyMedicalTrip.com,” he said.

Saber visited PlanMyMedicalTrip.com to get his queries answered. “I got to know several options for hospitals across India and also got all the necessary procedures sorted for me in no time,” he told reporters.

IndiaHealthCareTourism.com, inaugurated recently by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, is an initiative by the government to boost healthcare tourism. It is a web portal that helps and guides the patients who are looking for treatment options in India. It lists 93 topmost medical centres, 30 Ayurveda and wellness centres and one special category centre.

Another online venture, Medi Connect India, deals with the latest technologies like IVF (infertility), robotics surgeries, stem cell therapies, etc.

“The main reason behind India becoming a hub for medical tourism for foreigners is cost-effectiveness. Here in metro cities, you would get world-class treatment under the best doctors in a much cheaper way than what they would end up paying in their respective countries,” Shalini, assistant team lead, Medi Connect India, told reporters.

“In countries like Africa, a lot of modern treatments and good doctors are not available and hence they find India a good destination for medical reasons. Here, the best treatments are available with no waiting time in the company of highly-qualified doctors,” she added.

Medi Connect India has won the “National Tourism Award” for two consecutive years for excellence in medical tourism.

To serve foreign nationals better, most of the top-rated hospitals in India have also hired language translators to make patients, especially from Balkan and African countries, feel comfortable and help facilitate their treatment.

According to the CII-Grant Thornton white paper, Chennai, Mumbai, Andhra Pradesh and Delhi-NCR are the most favoured medical tourism destinations for foreigners who avail treatments in India.

Cost is a major driver for nearly 80 percent of medical tourists across the globe, it added.

The cost factor and availability of accredited facilities have led to the emergence of several global medical tourism corridors like Singapore, Thailand, India, Malaysia, Taiwan, Mexico and Costa Rica- and India appears to have taken a lead. (Vivek Singh Chauhan, IANS)

Next Story

Online intervention helps teenage moms deal with depression

For both rural and urban counties, the intervention led to significant changes in attitude, intention to seek depression treatment and actually seeking treatment

Stress during Pregnancy may cause Female Children to exhibit binge-eating-like behaviour in Adulthood. Pixabay
  • Online intervention may reduce depression in teenage moms
  • Postpartum depression can hinder a mother’s relationship with her child
  • This condition can be very dangerous for both mother and her child

Online intervention may help improve depression treatment rates in teenage mothers, a study has found. An online programme persuaded teenage mothers across 10 Kentucky counties to seek medical help for depression, highlighting an inexpensive way to increase mental health treatment rates for the vulnerable group.

Protein responsible for postpartum depression in pregnancy found
Online intervention can help in depression in teenage moms. IANS

The website included videos of adolescent mothers describing their experiences with postpartum depression and treatment, questions and answers, and local and national resources, including referrals for counselling services and suicide and child-abuse prevention hotlines.

Untreated postpartum depression hinders a mother’s relationship with her child, her functioning at work and school, mothering skills and development.

Also Read: 5 Healthy Ways To Get Back In Shape After Pregnancy

“The condition also can harm a baby’s development and attachment to the mother,” said M Cynthia Logsdon from the University of Louisville in the US.

Half of the roughly 400,000 adolescents 18 and younger who give birth annually in the US experience depressive symptoms, but less than 25 per cent follow referrals for depression evaluation and treatment, according to the study.

It is important to treat depression during the pregnancy. Pixabay

The research, conducted from 2013 to 2016, involved more than 200 teen moms in urban, suburban and rural counties in Kentucky. Participants on average were 18 years old, primarily African-American, did not have a high school diploma and had given birth in the past year.

For both rural and urban counties, the intervention led to significant changes in attitude, intention to seek depression treatment and actually seeking treatment. IANS