Healthcare -Cost Comparison between India and US

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Here is a incident  I found on facebook wall  about cost comparison of a surgery for a paitent (author’s mother ) between US and India .  This story helps to compare the cost of  healthcare between 2 nations.

While I was in the US for couple of years, I always felt that – if India could do so much(in terms of value addition and reduce cost ) in providing software services to US, Europe Japan and other nations – it can definitely be far more effective  in lowering the total cost of Healthcare  in the US and other countries. Besides cost, there are other aspects like – ease of consulting doctors quickly , getting  multiple opinions on a medical condition , admission into hospitals for any suspicion of emergency etc. play a big factor in this bias towards India’s healthcare sector advantage.

Of course, some might argue about the “Quality of healthcare” being different between the hospitals and also the coverage of Insurance.However, the advancements in medical healthcare and ‘quality and reliability of medical service’ among other things has improved tremendously in India in the past few years. There is also onset of “commercialization of healthcare sector” -where doctors/hospitals prescribe unwanted medicines and also surgeries to patients.

However, if comparison is made purely on  –the cost of healthcare, then in the US , its is still very high -see the link above for a sample. Affordability of healthcare procedures for even US citizens in the – average to good income group – is still at a premium – so much so, that it eats a significant amount of their savings or future earnings – post insurance coverage & co-pays ! Hence, the Medical tourism trend is still quite popular in India and south Asian countries.

There are lots of other factors besides cost – that one might need to consider when comparing healthcare services between India and the “developed nations”  but in the end – India and other such nations – do have a edge in healthcare over the West.

Minor surgeries, chronic illness and preventive healthcare cost is still quite low in India.  Medical tourism can really provide a low cost, quick and timely help to most of the healthcare needs of the west.

If any of you can share your good/bad experiences on similar lines, it would be perhaps help others in making a better and informed decision.

Please share your views in comments section below…



6 thoughts on “Healthcare -Cost Comparison between India and US

    vontoast said:
    November 7, 2014 at 4:45 am

    It is interesting how more transparent the medical system is in India compared to the US. We always make sure we have full travel insurance when we travel to the US for just in case. Have never needed to use it luckily.
    I would absolutely consider going to India to have an operation if I were allowed the option of time to decide.

      Dr. Chetali responded:
      November 7, 2014 at 12:51 pm


      True – cost cannot be the only factor for such needs.
      My view has been- In terms of transparency, most of the reputed hospitals like this who have been in the Medical tourism sector for long – do have a very transparent approach and process developed by now. They do provide good information on
      Pre arrival procedures

    • Total Approx. cost of the procedure + hospitalization cost
      what Medical reports to carry
      Staying conditions in India
      Management of stay for dependents
      Itenary planning for Pre/Post operative cases for tourism
      Post operative care and follow ups etc..
    • You can alos request references and video tours of the facilities from such hospitals.. this might help make better decisions.
      Also providing feedback and reviews on hospitals on forums etc. helps others to make a informed decision.

      Hope this helps.

      Dr. Chetali Samant

        vontoast said:
        November 8, 2014 at 2:44 am

        Thank you. Excellent suggestions. This helps a lot.

    vontoast said:
    November 7, 2014 at 4:49 am

    The hurdle to medical tourism is knowing which hospital to choose. Can you suggest guidelines to aid in choosing a good Indian hospital.

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