Scope of Medical Tourism in India

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Scope of Medical Tourism in India
Research Protocol
Rationale & background information
Medical tourism is the practice of patients travelling across the international boarders to receive medical services in other countries. The increased demand in healthcare in various countries such as the Unites States, Japan, and United Kingdom has lead to restrict the access and drive the healthcare costs and waiting time up. This has forced the citizens to acquire alternatives to domestic healthcare and medical tourism is one viable option. The medical tourism in India is booming with an estimated value of $2 billions in 2012 and expected to grow annually at 30%. In-spite of the growing medical tourism industry, there is little research on this area and the industry faces the least government intervention, lack of regulating agencies and quality, transparent information and greed of private sector. This paper aims to study the scope of medical tourism in India by analyzing opportunities, key challenges and developing a sustainable model to develop medical tourism. It tries to capture the stakeholders’ (patients, providers, government and other allied business) perspectives and make valuable recommendations for mutual benefit of all stakeholders. Study goals and objectives

Study Goal: The main goal of this paper is to improve the standards of medical tourism industry in India by identifying the opportunities and addressing the bottlenecks and gaps in services. Study Objectives: Primary objective of this research is to identify the factors in choosing a medical tourism destination and hospital, strengths and opportunities such as low cost-high quality treatments; analyze the weakness and threats such as lack of follow up care, lack of government initiative for medical tourism industry in India and provide insights to build a sustainable strategy. Study Design

The purpose of this qualitative research study is to understand the factors considered in choosing a destination and hospital for medical care and captures the expected and actual outcomes of medical tourism, perceptions of patients and providers to help improve the medical tourism industry in India. A descriptive qualitative research study with mixed methods of semi-structured interviews, or open-ended survey questionnaires and observational site visits are used to capture the data and fully understand the current scenario. Invitations to voluntarily participate in the research will be posted on LITSERV or through individual email solicitations to the stakeholders with a guaranteed anonymity. All the participants will be given choice to either participate in interviews or respond through open-ended survey questionnaires. Once the signed consent from the participants is received, 30-60 min one-to-one or telephonic semi-structured interviews will be conducted to assess different views of all the stakeholders in the industry. The participants have the leverage to share insights on topics that are not explicitly asked about in semi-structured interviews. The interview questions are build based on an interview guide developed by reviewing the existing literature, research articles, journals and website to cover certain aspects: a) Patient background, b) medical tourism in India, c) Stakeholder perceptions, and d) challenges and scope for improvement. An open-ended questionnaire with 30 questions will be made available to the participants who cannot be reached personally for interviews. All the 30 questions are aimed at comprehensively covering the different aspects mentioned above in interview guide. 10 on-site visits to the hospitals will be organized to witness the delivery and quality of care with prior permission from the hospital administration. Participants will be acknowledged for their valuable contribution to the research. This proposed research would take a 6-month time frame to design the research plan, select the sample population, conduct interviews and...