The term medical tourism was hardly in existence ten years back. The phenomena of traveling to other countries for specialized medical treatment has started as a result of overburdened public healthcare systems and high cost of medical services in the developed nations. Patients in Britain, Canada and some other developed countries are waiting for the major surgery and sometime this waiting period is more than few months. In USA, millions of people are without health insurance and major part of them are without dental coverage; because of the high cost of medical services, these people can't afford the treatment in their home country at their own expenses. But, in developing countries like India, South Africa, etc., cost of the same treatment is around one tenth of that in the developed nations and waiting time is near to nil with high quality medical facilities and professionals. So, patients from developed nations now look for inexpensive, high-quality foreign healthcare options.
Cosmetic surgery, eye surgery, kidney dialysis, open heart surgery, pediatric heart surgery, bone marrow transplants, hip and knee replacement, organ transplantation and dental treatments are among the major health problems that attract the patients from developed nations towards the medical tourism.