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Joint replacement surgery without insurance

January 11th, 2010 by Formosa Medical Travel

Many Americans without health insurance are faced with the prospect of joint replacement surgery, but do not have the means to pay the high rates in the United States. Both knee replacement surgery and hip replacement surgery can cost upwards of $70,000 in the United States — a significant cost by any measure.

As osteoarthritis continues to afflict a growing number of Americans, more and more patients are seeking alternatives to the extraordinary costs in the United States. It is estimated that osteoarthritis afflicts upwards of 20 million Americans, most of whom are over the age of 45. In addition to this, there are over 40 million Americans who do not have health insurance. Since the only long-term treatment to osteoarthritis is total joint replacement, many Americans are left with few options for surgery.

Medical tourism provides a solution to the millions of Americans afflicted by osteoarthritis who have no insurance. By traveling overseas for medical care, patients can experience a savings upwards of 75%. For example, knee replacement surgery in Taiwan can be obtained for less than $10,000. Even after the price of flights and accommodations, many medical travelers find themselves saving tens of thousands of dollars by traveling overseas for their medical procedures.

Uninsured and underinsured Americans have been a topic of much discussion in the healthcare debate. For the thousands of Americans who cannot afford the expensive medical care in the United States, medical tourism offers a low-cost alternative. The standard of care in many medical tourism destinations is as high or higher than that in the United States, and in many cases the doctors are U.S.-trained and educated.

Patients who are considering delaying or forgoing knee replacement or hip replacement surgery, medical tourism is an option that should be considered. Instead of living with pain and reduced mobility, thousands of Americans are traveling overseas to receive much-needed joint replacement surgery at affordable prices.

Transparency in medical pricing

December 22nd, 2009 by Formosa Medical Travel

One of the draws of medical tourism – alongside low costs and high quality care – is the transparency in pricing. In many cases in the United States, patients find it nearly impossible to get an accurate price quote before undergoing treatment. In many cases, hospitals in the United States offer different prices to patients with health insurance than the prices offered uninsured patients. Because of this, many hospitals are unwilling to provide a transparent pricing scheme. Oftentimes, insurance companies forge agreements with hospitals to charge patients a certain price within a certain “physician network,” and an entirely different price if patients choose a surgeon outside of the network. Uninsured patients often have to go into treatment without knowing what they will see on the final bill.

Overseas hospitals, including those in medical tourism destinations such as Taiwan, are much more transparent in their pricing plans. Patients are always provided with an itemized bill – which includes every single item the patient is expected to pay for, including medication, food, surgeon fees, and ward fees. The price quoted in the initial estimate is almost always the price paid after care is administered – except in cases where further treatment is required.

The hospitals in Formosa Medical Travel’s network offer all-inclusive knee and hip replacement packages, which include the price of treatment as well as accommodation and all other necessary expenditures. Patients who arrange surgery through Formosa Medical Travel will pay the exact rate they are quoted, and are provided with a fully-itemized bill.

Effects of delaying knee replacement

December 3rd, 2009 by Formosa Medical Travel

Delaying total knee replacement surgery for more than a year may cause poorer outcomes for patient, says a new study by Mark D. Rossi, PT, PhD, CSCS et al. The study examines the outcomes of patients who elected to pursue knee replacement surgery soon after their initial orthopedic office visit, compared with those who wait for more than 325 days to undergo the procedure.

Patients who receive the surgery earlier, the study shows, have decreased pain and improved mobility after the procedure. Those who wait, on the other hand, show decreased functionality and a higher level of pain. “Those who have longer waiting periods perceive greater pain and difficulty with tasks, place less body weight over the involved limb during squatting, and have worse mobility scores than their counterparts who have less of a waiting time to have surgery,” the study indicates.

The group that delayed surgery scored significantly lower on most of the evaluations, including the ability to place weight on the operated leg and perform exercises, as well as a decreased range of motion. The late surgical group also reported “significantly greater pain” in their operated knees.

While Rossi et al. submit that more research must be done to reach a solid conclusion, these results indicate that knee replacement candidates are likely to achieve better outcomes by pursuing surgery sooner rather than waiting.

Many Americans, especially those without health insurance, cannot afford the high cost of knee replacement surgery in the United States, and are forced to delay total knee replacement for years – possibly resulting in poorer outcomes, as this study shows. While the cost of knee replacement in the United States is high – as much as $65,000 in many cases – the procedure is much less costly in other parts of the world.

Formosa Medical Travel offers knee replacement surgery in Taiwan, for a total price of less than $15,000 – including airfare, surgical cost, accommodation, transportation, and full concierge service.  Formosa Medical Travel’s network of hospitals include some of the finest medical facilities in the world, many of which are accredited by the Joint Commission International, the American standard of hospital accreditation. For the thousands of Americans who are putting off knee replacement surgery due to the exorbitant prices in the United States, Formosa Medical Travel offers an inexpensive, high-quality alternative. For more details, visit

Medical tourism cost comparison

November 29th, 2009 by Formosa Medical Travel

As a medical tourism destination, Taiwan offers significant savings over the United States for many medical procedures. With the latest technology, state-of-the-art equipment, and medical centers that rival the finest hotels, Taiwan offers a medical tourism experience that is unparalleled in the world. Patients can expect to experience savings as high as 80% for many procedures – even after the cost of airfare.

Cost comparison for major procedures

medical tourism cost comparison

The prices shown here are only estimates, and will vary from patient-to-patient. Formosa Medical Travel offers single knee replacement surgery, single hip replacement surgery, double knee replacement surgery, and double hip replacement surgery in Taiwan for costs dramatically lower than those in the United States.

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