For the Media

Bangkok Hospital, Thailand
Mount Elizabeth, Singapore
Hospital Israelita Albert Einstein, Brazil
Barbados Fertility Center, Barbados
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Acibadem Healthcare Group, Turkey
CIMA San Jose, Costa Rica
Sime Darby Subang Jaya, Malaysia
Ko Samui, Thailand

The Most Trusted Resource in International Health Travel

Researchers, journalists and industry leaders worldwide look to Patients Beyond Borders as the most authoritative resource for international health travel and patient choice for high-quality, affordable medical care. We can help you find the right contacts for your story: leading international hospitals and clinics, practitioners, patients, medical travel agencies, employers, or insurers with compelling accounts about their personal and professional experiences.

Visit our Facts & Figures page for current information on the medical tourism market and top destinations.

Media Inquires

Patients Beyond Borders in the News

    Healthcare: China's Must-Have Overseas Luxury
    Jing Daily, 14 August 2019
    According to Josef Woodman, CEO of Patients Beyond Borders, medical tourism “isn’t sexy to talk about” and is still seen as a social taboo. This is true to a certain extent, but it doesn’t imply that the industry isn’t a booming business, especially for countries who want to attract upwardly mobile and affluent Chinese patients.Read more
    Expertise in oncology puts Malaysia on medical tourism map
    The Sun Daily, 9 July 2019
    Data by Patients Beyond Borders shows that foreigners seeking treatment in Malaysia can enjoy average savings of between 60% and 80% on procedures such as CABG, valve replacement with bypass, total hip replacement, total knee replacement, gastric bypass, implant-supported dentures, full facelift, rhinoplasty and others. In comparison, Singapore offers cost savings of 25% to 40% and Mexico, 40% to 60%. Read more
    The Worst Patients in the World
    The Atlantic, July 2019
    "In most of the world, what the doctor says still goes. 'Doctors are more deified in other countries; patients follow orders,' says Josef Woodman, the CEO of Patients Beyond Borders, a consulting firm that researches international health care. He contrasts this with the attitude of his grown children in the U.S.: 'They don't trust doctors as far as they can throw them.'" Read more
    Juarez's medical tourism plummets as bridge wait times grow
    ABC KTSM El Paso, 5 June 2019
    "Medical tourism is one of Mexico's multi-billion-dollar industries and one of the main lures of border cities like Juarez, Tijuana and Laredo for American visitors. According to the web page of Patients Beyond Borders, a medical travel organization, in 2016 medical tourism contributed $4.6 billion to Mexico's economy. The reason? Cheaper prices." Read more
    I had my misgivings about going abroad for surgery
    BBC, 28 March 2019
    "Patients Beyond Borders, a publisher of guidebooks for 'medical tourists' estimates that more than 20 million people will travel to another country for medical treatment this year, up 25% from 16 million last year. Meanwhile, a 2016 report by payments giant Visa estimated that the medical tourism industry was worth $50bn a year, and continuing to grow." Read more
    Where care counts more than money
    The Nation, 26 January 2019
    "Famous for specialised treatments and anti-ageing programmes, Thailand ranks among the top 10 medical tourism destinations, along with Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Turkey, Mexico, Israel, Costa Rica, India and Turkey, according to Patients Beyond Borders. It's home to 64 hospitals accredited by Joint Commission International, which assures visitors safety and high-quality standards—the highest number in Asean and the fourth in the world." Read more
    Dallas woman goes to Mexico for plastic surgery, returns to U.S. on life support
    CBS This Morning, 14 November 2018
    "A 2017 study estimated nearly 1.5 million Americans were expected to travel outside the U.S. for medical care. In Mexico, procedures can cost anywhere between 40 and 65 percent less than in the U.S. Laura's family estimates her procedures were somewhere around $8,500. 'People are seeking alternatives,' said Josef Woodman, CEO of Patients Beyond Borders. 'The oversight in countries like Mexico isn't up to the same standards as it is on the United States.'" Watch now
    The Resilience of the American Vacation in Mexico
    Skift, 15 October 2018
    "American medical tourism to Mexico is as old as traditional tourism, dating back to approximately the 1950s, according to Josef Woodman, CEO of Patients Beyond Borders. The organization estimated that in 2017, 1.4 million Americans engaged in medical tourism, which can be defined as seeking treatment abroad, often involving a leisure element, typically within a four-hour plane ride from home. Pricey procedures tend to drive these trips: dental work, cosmetic surgery, fertility treatments, and bariatric surgery." Read more
    A lack of insurance is leading more Americans to have weight loss surgery in Mexico
    Vox, 8 October 2018
    "Following one's instincts while in a foreign country for medical treatment can be lifesaving, according to Josef Woodman, the CEO of Patients Beyond Borders, which provides information to consumers about international health care travel. He encourages patients considering going abroad for health care to thoroughly research the medical facility they plan to visit for treatment. He says Americans undergoing surgery abroad would be wise to seek care in a multidisciplinary hospital or in a medical center that's close to one, because such facilities are equipped with emergency rooms, intensive care units, and infectious disease teams." Read more
    Americans Are Traveling Abroad for Medical Care. Here’s How it Could Save You Thousands
    Men's Journal, October 2018
    "Nonetheless, it takes a special kind of person to grab his passport and get surgery in a place he's visiting for the first time. Josef Woodman, CEO of Patients Beyond Borders, a medical-travel advocacy group, says the prime new market is millennials, like Bull. 'A lot of them have sports injuries, which aren't always covered by insurance,' Woodman says. 'They like to travel, they don't trust U.S. health care, and they love beating the system.'" Read more
    7 Options for Affordable Dental Care
    U.S. News & World Report, 26 July 2018
    "Contemplating leaving the country to find affordable dental care? This practice is known as dental tourism, and Mexico is a popular destination for those living along the U.S. southern border. The cost for many dental procedures in Mexico is only 10 to 20 percent of that charged at U.S. clinics. For example, root canals and crowns, which can cost thousands of dollars in Texas, may only require a $250 payment a few miles over the border. Companies like Patients Beyond Borders and Dental Departures specialize in coordinating dental care for travelers." Read more
    Medical Tourists: Incoming and Outgoing
    The American Journal of Medicine, 22 June 2018
    "Now, many medical tourists are going the other way—from the United States to other countries to receive health care. In 2007, it is estimated that 750,000 Americans traveled to other countries for health care. In 2017, more than 1.4 million Americans sought health care in a variety of countries around the world" Read more
    Medical Tourism: Once Ready for Takeoff, Now Stuck at the Gate
    Managed Care, 28 March 2018
    "Almost 10 years later, it's safe to say that medical tourism has fallen well short of those bold predictions. Patients Beyond Borders, a travel guide and website for medical tourism, estimates that 12 to 15 million people traveled to other countries for medical care in 2016—and that's worldwide, not just the United States. Visa estimated 11 million people globally leave their home countries each year for medical procedures. So obviously, those breathless projections of 20 million or so Americans globetrotting in pursuit of cheaper health care didn't come true. Not by a long shot." Read more
    Why More People Are Traveling Abroad for Plastic Surgery
    Healthline, 16 April 2018
    "'There are plenty of bad actors out there, particularly in the border towns of Mexico,' Patients Beyond Borders CEO, Josef Woodman told Healthline, 'but also in high-traffic leisure travel destinations known for cosmetic surgery, such as Dubai, Bangkok, and Istanbul. It's critical for traveling patients to carefully vet and select reputable providers with track records of successful outcomes." Read more
    Americans still have to go abroad to get affordable health care
    Salon, 5 March 2018
    "Campbell and Woodman both said they don't expect Trump's repeal of the individual mandate for the Affordable Care Act to impact medical tourism in a positive or negative way. They see medical prices continuing to rise, no matter what happens next. Part of it was the Affordable Care Act itself, which Woodman said, 'wasn't what Obama was envisioning. It was raped and pillaged by the insurance companies. And so you end up with the same old lack of transparency.'" Read more
    Considering the Tax Benefits of Medical Tourism
    The CPA Journal, March 2018
    "Medical tourism is a rapidly growing, multimillion-dollar industry. Patients Beyond Borders, a comprehensive source for consumer information on medical tourism, estimates that in 2016, 1.3 million people left the United States to seek medical care in other countries. The number of medical tourists is expected to grow substantially over the next five to ten years, as taxpayers travel for popular procedures such as knee replacements, face lifts, dental care, and even open heart surgery." Read more
    Would you travel overseas for surgery? You might after reading these experiences
    MarketWatch, 21 February 2018
    "Considering the ridiculous cost of health care in the United States these days, the surge in medical tourism in recent years is hardly surprising. And, make no mistake, it is surging. According to Patients Beyond Borders, almost 1.5 million Americans traveled to a foreign country last year to save money on a medical procedure. That’s about a 10-fold increase from a decade ago." Read more
    Medical Tourism Takes Flight
    China Daily, 28 January 2018
    "Woodman said: 'Unlike the US medical traveler (who tends to be lower middle or upper working class), the Chinese cross-border patient tends to be comparatively wealthy, older (55-75), more highly educated, and from urban areas.'" Read more
    More Chinese Go Abroad for IVF Services
    China Daily, 22 January 2018
    "'The main driver is the lifting of the one-child ban in 2015, swiftly giving rise to an influx of Chinese couples seeking a second child, coupled with a dearth of reliable fertility facilities on the mainland,' Josef Woodman, CEO of Patients Beyond Borders, told China Daily Asia Weekly." Read more
    Going Over the Border
    AMI Magazine, 17 January 2018
    "The perception is that medical tourism involves flying far overseas. However, 'about 60 percent of US outbound medical travel,' Mr. Woodman told me, 'is Americans crossing the border into Mexico for dental work. And even there, most of those patients are coming from Texas, Arizona and Southern California, traveling nearby for cheaper care.' He said that similar border crossings exist elsewhere. Germans and Austrians, for example, travel into Hungary for dental care. These kinds of trips are often regular, yearly trips to their favorite dentists." Read more
    India's Hospitals Are Filling with Desperate Patients
    Foreign Policy Magazine, 2 January 2018
    "Josef Woodman, the CEO of Patients Beyond Borders, says the industry is pushing hospitals to seek international accreditation. 'When you get a JCI [Joint Commission International] that comes in and makes certain demands of the hospital, that's a benchmark for the rest of the health care system,' he says." Read more
    6 Trending Travel Trends for 2018
    Huffington Post, 28 December 2017
    "'Medical Tourism II – Patients Beyond Borders reports that close to a million Americans went outside the U.S. last year for medical treatment. As Boomers grow older and their health insurance becomes iffier by the day, 2018 is finally going to be the year that this seemingly always emerging trend finally does take off. " Read more
    How Medical Tourism—a Hot-Button Issue—Could Help Canada's Economy
    The Globe and Mail, 20 December 2017
    "It is clear that as a country, we are lagging as a preferred destination for foreign patients. Currently about 11 million people travel abroad for medical care, according to Patients Beyond Borders, with the global market...estimated to be worth $38.5-billion to $55-billion. As Canada has sat back, Asian countries have promoted medical tourism for the past decade, making them the No. 1 destination for medical tourists."Read more
    San Diego banking on medical tourism
    BenefitsPRO, 8 December 2017
    "The report cites Josef Woodman, who runs Patients Beyond Borders, a yearly publication that analyzes the medical tourism industry, saying that just building out that infrastructure can cost as much as $1 million for each culture or part of the world a medical tourism campaign targets." Read more
    Medical Tourism in Ophthalmology
    Ophthalmology Business Magazine, December 2017
    "'We are seeing a rising trend for what I call the incidental medical traveler, one who is going to travel anyway and seeks light medical care while on the road,' Mr. Woodman said, noting this medical care is usually minimally invasive with predictable outcomes and short recovery periods."Read more
    The Lucrative Ties between Border Surgeries and U.S. Middlemen
    USA Today: AZ Central, 16 November 2017
    "Josef Woodman, CEO of Chapel Hill, North Carolina-based Patients Beyond Borders, said American companies or individuals acting as facilitators for surgeons abroad generally have little oversight. Some facilitators are organized businesses. Others are former patients who may want to make a little extra cash." Read more
    Ticket to Health: Do your homework before traveling for medical procedures
    The Dallas Morning News, 6 November 2017
    "That kind of savings is prompting more patients to look outside the U.S. for big-ticket procedures. Patients Beyond Borders, an information service for consumers, estimates that 1.7 million Americans will turn to foreign hospitals for elective medical care in 2017. Most of those medical travelers are ages 45 to 65, too young for Medicare but old enough that serious medical issues are more likely to crop up, says Josef Woodman, CEO of Patients Beyond Borders. To give patients some reassurances about quality, the Joint Commission International, an independent accrediting organization for U.S. hospitals, now accredits more than 400 hospitals worldwide." Read more
    San Diego's next tourism craze: medicine
    The San Diego Union-Tribune, 6 November 2017
    "In the world of medical tourism, much less is known about the economics of the domestic segment compared to international travel for medical care, says Josef Woodman, founder of Patients Beyond Borders, a resource for global medical travel. The U.S., he says, can take credit for about 10 percent of the total volume of international patients, but that traffic accounts for 25 percent of the revenue because the care here is more costly, Woodman noted." Read more
    This Philly couple traveled to Romania for cheaper dental work. Should you, too?
    Philadelphia Inquirer, 25 October 2017
    "'According to Patients Beyond Borders, a guide and website for medical tourists, more than 150 million Americans lack dental insurance and are increasingly seeking dental work abroad. Currently, the majority of Americans traveling outside the country to see dentists venture to Mexico from the border states of Texas, Arizona, and California" Read more
    Surgery Safaris—The Facelift Africa Needs
    Forbes Africa, 2 October 2017
    "'Most nations in Africa continue to struggle to build out their healthcare infrastructure and are thus not yet suitable for the contemporary international medical traveler. South Africa (particularly Cape Town and Johannesburg), are exceptions, offering an array of medical care for regional and long-haul travelers, including cosmetic surgery, cardiology, dental care, joint and spine work, and ophthalmology,' says Josef Woodman, CEO of PBB." Read more
    Mexico Biggest Beneficiary If They Cancel Obamacare
    El Diario, 10 July 2017
    'As I see it, AHCA is a component of a broader trend toward people seeking global options in their health care,' Woodman said. He believes the US medical system is broken and high hospital bills and staggering pharmaceutical prices push many Americans to seek attention across the border." Read more
    Tijuana: from party town to tech hub
    Financial Times, 20 June 2017
    "The city has a big business in medical tourism, which last year pulled in about $600m of the annual $3.5bn spent in Mexico overall. According to Patients Beyond Borders, which publishes an annual guide to medical travel, between 200,000 and 1.1m patients come over the border every year for cut-price tummy tucks, dental work, plastic surgery, hair restoration and other procedures. Tijuana even has a dedicated medical tourism border crossing." Read more
    What you need to know before you go to Mexico for dental care
    ABC KGUN-9, 18 May 2017
    "Another resource that patients considering medical tourism should reference is Patients Beyond Borders. It is not just limited to dental procedures and answers many questions you may have before heading out of the country. They have published a step by step guide to planning a successful trip out of the country for medical and dental care." Read more
    China emerges as next global medical tourism hotspot
    Xinhua, 11 April 2017
    "'We see a rising market in China,' said Patients Beyond Borders CEO Josef Woodman in an e-mail interview. He said China can successfully compete with mature markets in the region, as it is strong in TCM treatment and its health care infrastructure is fast improving." Read more
    A boom in medical tourism to Mexico predicted if Obamacare ends
    Yahoo News, 22 March 2017
    "Patients Beyond Borders CEO Josef Woodman credits the Affordable Care Act with helping drive this trend by forcing people to make choices about their insurance for the first time, leading many to pick seemingly inexpensive 'skinny plans' that left many underinsured. 'Outbound medical tourism is not about rich people,” said Woodman. “It’s really people who are one medical condition away from the streets.'" Read more
    Going to Mexico for dental care saved me $1,800
    Arizona Daily Star, 13 March 2017
    "Most of the Americans getting dental care in Mexico live in highly populated border-area cities like Tucson, Patients Beyond Borders CEO Josef Woodman says. He has been researching the industry for 12 years and says while cost is unquestionably the driving factor for seeking out-of-country care, he urges dental tourists to do their homework and not to choose based on cost alone." Read more
    Medical Tourism Is Big Business But Still an Emerging Market
    SKIFT, 10 March 2017
    "With perpetually rising healthcare costs in countries like the U.S. or poor quality hospitals and doctors in other regions, medical tourism is thriving but many travel brands remain uncertain with how to address and market medical travel. That's the view of Josef Woodman, the CEO of Patients Beyond Borders, an organization that connects travelers to accredited hospitals, doctors, and specialists around the world." Read more
    Medical tourism taking wing as U.S. patients fly abroad for treatment
    Eau Claire Leader-Telegram, 5 March 2017
    "'We have access to great care here in the United States, and if people had their druthers and money was no object, they'd stay here for medical care,' said Josef Woodman, founder and CEO of Patients Beyond Borders, a company that provides information and advice for consumers considering medical travel. 'But there's a whole lot of people who can’t afford the out-of-pocket costs here." Read more
    Trump travel ban could hurt medical visits to U.S.
    Chicago Tribune, 31 January 2017
    "Fewer international patients might be a problem for hospitals, said Josef Woodman, CEO of Patients Beyond Borders, a company based in North Carolina that publishes and sells guides about international medical travel. 'Hospitals will feel it because as their margins shrink, they need that out-of-pocket patient that they charge a lot of money to,' Woodman said." Read more
    Travel Abroad for Low-Cost Care
    Kiplinger, 6 December 2016
    "Some highly regarded facilities are not accredited by these international agencies, but you should investigate their standards carefully. Start by hunting online for any complaints or negative news reports that represent red flags. Hospitals may tout partnerships with prestigious U.S. medical centers, or they may highlight the number of U.S. board-certified physicians they have on staff, but these credentials are not particularly valuable on their own. Before booking an appointment with a physician or surgeon, ask about his or her background (including education and training) and for references from past patients. Also ask how many similar procedures he or she has performed, says Woodman. The higher the number, the better." Read more
    The Dangerous Practice of Seeking Medical Treatments Abroad
    Vice, 26 October 2016
    "According to Patients Beyond Borders, a medical-tourism guidebook published in 2007, patients spend between $3,800 and $6,000 per cross-border medical visit, including treatment costs, transportation, and accommodations. Still, cancer drugs in the US can cost much more—research from Memorial Sloan Kettering's Center for Health Policy and Outcomes shows the price of 30 newly approved cancer drugs rose to $10,000 a month or more between 2010 and 2014." Read more
    The allure of cheap doctors, drugs and dentists in Mexico
    The Desert Sun, 20 October 2016
    "Josef Woodman, the author of the medical tourism guide Patients Beyond Borders, estimated that 900,000 Americans left the country for medical care in 2013, but Woodman is not counting people traveling for prescription drugs, a big draw to Mexico. Another estimate for California only based on a 2001 survey put the number at 952,000 adults heading to Mexico annually for medical care, dental work and prescription drugs." Read more
    How Scripps and Baptist Health South Florida are responding to medical tourism growth
    Becker's Healthcare, 19 September 2016
    "Patients Beyond Borders estimates that the worldwide market for international patient care is approximately $40 billion today, and is expected to grow at a rate of at least 15 percent year-over-year. More specifically, 14 million patients use medical services outside of their country of residence each year, according to Patients Beyond Borders. On average, patients spend between $3,800 and $6,000 per visit." Read more
    Monterrey, un destino favorito del turismo médico
    El Economista, 14 July 2016
    "En general, los pacientes son de origen hispano que emigraron hacia los Estados Unidos así como hispanos nacidos en ése país, que vienen a México por atención médica, hospitalaria y dental, indica el estudio Patients Beyond Borders." Read more
    Dental tourism growing: Quebec Order of Dentists
    Radio Canada International, 14 June 2016
    "Patients Beyond Borders, researched the development and found Mexico is the most popular destination for Canadians seeking elective procedures such as dental work. Costa Rica, South America and India are also popular medical destinations." Read more
    How Cheap Oil and Fewer Nose Jobs Hurt Thai Hospital Stocks
    Bloomberg, 29 May 2016
    "Between 1.3 million and 1.8 million medical tourists traveled to Thailand last year, according to figures from Patients Beyond Borders, a consulting firm in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. The country is well known for cosmetic and sex change procedures. Medical tourism generated 107 billion baht ($3 billion) of revenue in 2014, according to the latest Thai government estimate." Read more
    Sex-change surgery: India’s new line in budget medical tourism
    AFP, 7 May 2016
    "The number pales in comparison to Thailand which draws up to two million [medical travel] patients a year, but the firm’s chief executive officer (CEO) Josef Woodman was confident India would become a future leader in the niche area of gender affirmation surgeries. 'I think in another three to five years. It takes time,' Woodman told AFP of the surgeries, performed by less than a dozen Indian surgeons mostly in Delhi and Mumbai." Read more
    Chinese spur medical tourism in US
    China Daily, 15 April 2016
    "Competition among US hospitals for Chinese patients is heating up as they flood the US market, particularly lung cancer patients from large industrial centers like Beijing and Guangzhou in South China's Guangdong province, said Josef Woodman, CEO of Patients Beyond Borders, a company that publishes medical travel guides." Read more
    Why you should cross the border for a new face
    New York Post, 29 March 2016
    "According to Josef Woodman, CEO of the international medical and health travel Web site Patients Beyond Borders, increasing numbers of people are going abroad for health care. Judging by data from ministries of health and hospitals around the world, he says, 1.2 million to 1.4 million Americans are now heading overseas for surgery annually. And that number has been increasing by an average of 23 percent per year for the last 10 years. He attributes recent rises, in part, to Obamacare making Americans increasingly comfortable with shopping for physicians and insurance plans." Read more
    Can medical tourism succeed in Central Florida?
    Orlando Sentinel, 6 February 2016
    "'You can't become a medical tourism attraction until you have a great story to tell, beginning with great quality of care,' said Josef Woodman, founder and CEO of Patients Beyond Borders, who has written a book on the subject. Central Florida may be on its way, especially with Lake Nona's medical city booming, 'but does it have a critical mass of hospitals? I'd say probably not,' Woodman said." Read more
    Should You Travel Abroad for IVF?
    US News & World Report, 15 December 2015
    "Americans may also find equal, if not superior, care abroad, according to Woodman's book, 'Patients Beyond Borders: Everybody's Guide to Affordable, World-Class Medical Travel.' Barbados Fertility Centre, for example, reports an 80 percent IVF success rate for women under 35. Compare that to the United States,? where only about 46 percent of IVF cycles result in a clinical pregnancy on average, according to the Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology." Read more

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Last updated on 15 August 2019