International medical travel occurs when patients cross national borders to purchase medical goods and services. On occasion, physicians in home countries will be the last point of domestic contact for patients seeking healthcare information before they travel abroad for care. When this is the case, physicians have a unique opportunity to inform patients about their options and help guide them towards ethical practices. This opportunity brings to the fore an important question: What role should physicians in more-developed home countries play in promoting or constraining international medical travel towards less-developed destination countries? In our view, critical attention to the decision spaces of patients—defined by the personal circumstances, socio-cultural cues, and legal constraints that inform decision-making—is a useful starting point for evaluating the proper response of physicians to various forms of international medical travel.
- medical travel
- waiting lists
- philosophical ethics
Statistics from Altmetric.com
If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.
GC and FB were equal contributors.
Competing interests None.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.
Read the full text or download the PDF:
Other content recommended for you
- Ethical and legal implications of the risks of medical tourism for patients: a qualitative study of Canadian health and safety representatives’ perspectives
- The ‘patient's physician one-step removed’: the evolving roles of medical tourism facilitators
- Children travelling for treatment: what we don't know
- Elite athletes travelling to international destinations >5 time zone differences from their home country have a 2–3-fold increased risk of illness
- Will medical tourism survive covid-19?
- Role, structure and effects of medical tourism in Africa: a systematic scoping review protocol
- Rising cost of care in rich countries is driving patients to seek treatment in developing nations
- The upside of trade in health services
- Commercial surrogacy: how provisions of monetary remuneration and powers of international law can prevent exploitation of gestational surrogates
- International medical graduates in the USA: a qualitative study on perceptions of physician migration