The number of Americans traveling abroad for medical procedures continues to increase. It is estimated that approximately 1.2 million Americans went to a foreign country for medical care in 2014, compared to 900,000 Americans in 2013. The rapid growth in medical tourism is a testament to the increasing consumer demand for low-cost treatment overseas.
Any cost savings will be disregarded without an assurance of quality care. In that regard, Malaysia is a medical tourism destination that must be given serious consideration based on quality and affordability as the country offers Western-trained doctors and state-of-the-art facilities, which have received international accreditation. Language is not a barrier since English is the first language used at hospitals and widely spoken throughout the country. In addition, patients will experience the friendliness of the Malaysian culture and their welcoming hospitality. Malaysia ranked #4 in International Living’s The World’s Best Places to Retire in 2015, in part because of its top-notch healthcare, which is “comparable to that in any First-World nation.”
The low cost of treatment in Malaysia is a major selling point. Single tier pricing for locals and foreigners, a favorable exchange rate, and a lower cost of living in Malaysia all contribute to reduced prices. Patients can save between 65-80% on medical procedures when compared with U.S. prices. For example, a facelift that costs approximately $14,500 in the U.S. would cost $4,900 in Malaysia; a gastric bypass would cost $25,000 in the U.S. and $8,200 in Malaysia. In addition, Malaysia has a level of service comparable to the U.S. on check-ups and full body scans, dental treatments, Lasik and cosmetic surgery, IVF, and more complicated procedures requiring extensive experience and professional training. When it comes time to recover, patients can benefit from being in a tropical paradise with a perfect climate year round.