Eleven million people worldwide travel to other countries for low-cost medical treatment. This kind of travel is known as "medical tourism."
Experts say people spend hundreds of billions of dollars on medical tourism every year. And, experts predict the industry will grow by up to 25 percent a year over the next 10 years.
VISA and Oxford Economics recently studied medical tourism trends. The study found that such travel is increasing because of the rising cost of medical treatments, the aging of societies and advances in international transportation. About 340 new international airports will be built in the next 10 years, VISA says.
A company called MedRepublic is connecting doctors with people around the world who need medical care. Robert Page founded the company.
"Our software allows patients to use our website so they can search for doctors directly and talk to them," he said.
Page says the top country for medical tourism is Thailand. The United States is second. He says the United States is "a country with a level of specialized medicine not found elsewhere."
The recent VISA study says the United States was the top destination for medical tourism, not Thailand. It also found an increasing number of people are traveling to Singapore, Germany, Korea, Spain, Britain, Canada and Israel for medical care.
The VISA report predicts China will become the top destination within the next 10 years.
Between 750,000 and 1.8 million Americans leave the country for medical reasons every year because of the high costs of treatments and surgeries. Page says Mexico is a common choice for American medical tourists.
"For Americans, the main destination is Mexico due to its geographical proximity and the relation(ship) between both countries. The main reason is treatment for cancer," he said.
Many Americans also travel to other countries for plastic surgery, dental surgery, gastric bypasses and orthopedic surgeries.
Susy Pozo was a medical tourist. Four years ago, she traveled to Mexico for stomach surgery.
"I used to weigh 194 pounds," (or 88 kilograms). "I had many health issues. It's very expensive in the U.S. I was worried because of the security in Puerto Vallarta, but four years ago I made the best decision of my life: I traveled to Mexico and had stomach surgery at the Puerto Vallarta hospital."
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warns that there are risks connected to less-costly medical treatments in other countries.
Robert Page of MedRepublic says his company tries to lower those risks by helping patients talk directly with foreign doctors.
"We are trying to resolve those issues with the right kind of information to show that a doctor and a hospital in India, for example, offer the same quality as a doctor or a hospital in the United States."
I'm Alice Bryant.
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1.A company called MedRepublic is connecting doctors with people around the world who need medical care. Robert Page founded the company.
connect... with... 将……与……连接起来
What makes you suppose him to be connected with them?
It's a place where people can thrive and be connected with each other.
2.For Americans, the main destination is Mexico due to its geographical proximity and the relation(ship) between both countries.
due to 由于，因为
The traffic accident was allegedly due to negligence.
To some extent, this is due to the nature of the world around it.
全球有1100万人口会到其他国家旅游，以寻求廉价医疗 。这种旅游被称之为“医疗旅游” 。
有关专家表示，人们每年花在医疗旅游上的钱可达数千亿 。此外，据专家预测，医疗旅游行业将在未来10年间增长多达25% 。
最近，维萨信用卡以及牛津经济研究院对医疗旅游趋势做了研究 。该研究发现，医疗旅游之所以不断增加是因为医疗成本的不断增加、社会人口的老龄化以及国际交通状况的提升 。维萨表示，未来十年将有340个新的国际机场建成 。
MedRepublic公司就致力于将医生与寻求医疗的各地人们联系在一起 。该公司创始人为罗伯特佩奇 。
维萨最新的研究表明，美国才是最受欢迎的医疗旅游地，而非泰国 。此外，该研究还发现有越来越多的人到新加坡、德国、韩国、西班牙、英国、加拿大、以色列寻求医疗 。
美国每年有75万-180万人因医疗费和手术费过高而选择到国外进行治疗 。佩奇说，墨西哥已成为美国人医疗旅游的常见选择 。
“由于地理相近、关系相亲，墨西哥成了很多美国人的首要目的地 。他们主要是寻求癌症的治疗，”他说 。
苏西是就是一名医疗旅游者 。4年前，她去墨西哥做了胃部手术 。
“我以前体重有194磅，”（即88公斤） 。“我有很多健康问题 。而美国治病很贵 。我其实还是担心巴亚尔塔港(Puerto Vallarta)安全情况的，但4年前我做了一辈子最正确的决定 。我去了墨西哥，并在巴亚尔塔港医院做了胃部手术 。”
“我们力图用恰到好处的信息来解决这些问题 。拿印度打个比方，来证明印度的医生和医院可以提供跟美国医生或者医院同等质量的服务 。”
Alice Bryant为您播报 。