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Kinmen welcomes Chinese investment on tourism industry

June 2nd, 2010 by Formosa Medical Travel


Kinmen, May 29 (CNA) The Kinmen County government said Saturday that it welcomes a partly Chinese-funded joint venture that will build a resort and shopping center on the island of Kinmen.

The Investment Commission under the Ministry of Economic Affairs approved the project on Thursday, in which a Chinese company from Fujian Province plans to invest about NT$50 million (US$1.56 million) to set up a company with a Taiwanese partner on the offshore island.

The joint venture — which will be 49 percent owned by the Fujian-based company and 51 percent by the Taiwanese side — will be the first time a Chinese company has invested in Taiwan’s tourism industry.

Hsiao Yung-ping, an official at the Kinmen Industrial Development and Investment Promotion Commission, said that the company is eying the increased number of tourists traveling via the direct transport links between the Chinese city of Xiamen and the Taiwanese islands of Kinmen and Matsu — the so-called “mini-three-links.” Kinmen County’s efforts to make itself an island of medical tourism and leisure travel also provide a lot of business opportunities, he added.

Hsiao said that Kinmen County offers various investment incentives and will provide assistance to companies in need. (By Ni Kuo-yen and Fanny Liu)

European medical travel industry issues “Declaration of Venice”

May 15th, 2010 by Formosa Medical Travel

In one of the key outcomes of the European Medical Travel Conference 2010 in Monastier, Italy, the European medical travel industry has announced the issuance of the “Declaration of Venice,” calling on industry and government actors to cooperate and work together to help grow the medical travel industry.

The Declaration calls on providers to recognize the “right of citizens to travel for the purpose to receive access to or better healthcare services,” the “need for global health systems to respond better to the needs of increasingly mobile citizens,” and the necessity of “integrat[ing] better health and tourism services” through greater investment.

The Declaration was intended, in part, to reaffirm the rights of European citizens to travel throughout Europe and the world to receive the best possible medical care at affordable prices. The document stresses cooperation between all levels of the sector, including public tourism agencies, government actors, and healthcare providers.

Contributors to the declaration hope that the document’s publication will help impress upon European politicians that the medical tourism industry is here to stay, and that it will encourage all players in the medical tourism industry to strive for greater value, safety, access, and quality in medical tourism.

Dallas Morning News blog reports on medical tourism in Taiwan

February 16th, 2010 by Formosa Medical Travel

Murli Melwani, guest blogging for the Dallas Morning News, praises Taiwan’s abilities in medical tourism:

Have you wondered why even affluent Americans have become medical tourists? According to the Deloitte Center for Health Care Solutions, 750,000 Americans travelled abroad for medical care in 2007. The Center projects that the figure will cross 1.6 million by 2012. …

An important reason why medical dollars go overseas is the status and the approach of doctors in the U.S. I will explain this in terms of my experience with doctors in Taiwan, where I lived for 25 years.

Most of the doctors in Taiwan are trained in the U.S. When they return to home, they do not open their own clinics. They work for Medical University hospitals, hospitals founded by American missionaries, those set up by philanthropic Taiwanese or in government hospitals. Their status: they are employees and they earn a salary.

What is important is the approach of these doctors, which is clinical rather than analytical. The clinical approach is deductive in nature and the doctor draws on his experience and knowledge of symptoms in arriving at his diagnosis. The analytical approach uses the results of tests to draw conclusions.

By contrast, says Melwani, doctors in the United States often order unnecessary treatments and tests, in order to recover their investment in hospital equipment and technology. Melwani recommends that American doctors return to a style more similar to that of Taiwan, where treatment is dictated by need instead of money.

Hip Replacement Cost

December 20th, 2009 by Formosa Medical Travel

Hip Replacement Cost Analysis

The United States has among the highest costs in the world for hip replacement surgery. An American with no health insurance can expect to pay upwards of $45,000 at a typical hospital. Those with insurance will, barring a few exceptions, be covered by their provider. However, out-of-pocket expenses can still be costly for those who have health insurance. Patients with Medicare are eligible for hip replacement surgery.

For American patients without health insurance, it is worth considering medical tourism – leaving the country for hip replacement surgery. Many countries in the world offer hip replacement procedures for costs dramatically lower than those in the United States. We have listed hip replacement cost estimates for various medical tourism destinations, as well as the United States, in the chart below. The cost of total hip replacement surgery will also vary from patient to patient, depending on factors such as age and medical history.


Hip Replacement Cost
Price Estimates

United States:$50,0800-$65,000
Singapore: $17,000-$23,000
Thailand: $15,500-$17,500
Taiwan: $8,000 – $13,000
India $8,000 – $12,200





Formosa Medical Travel works on behalf of patients seeking affordable knee and hip replacement surgery in Taiwan. As one of the world’s most developed countries, with a healthcare system ranked among the best, English-speaking doctors, no visa requirement, and some of the lowest surgical prices in the world, Taiwan has emerged as one of the most popular destinations for Americans seeking low-cost hip replacement surgery.

At Formosa Medical Travel, there is no charge for our services, and your procedure is fully insurable against complications through a US Insurer. Most of the hospitals in our network have been accredited by Joint Commission International (JCI). These world-class facilities provide outstanding care at rates far lower than those in the United States. We will book your surgery, transfer medical records, assist in finding your flight and hotel, and we’ll be there at the airport when you arrive, all at no cost to you.

Medical tourism poised to change the industry

December 3rd, 2009 by Formosa Medical Travel

By Julie Sturgeon, Uptake Travel Industry Blog

There’s a new player in town, and there’s no doubt many travel services will welcome it with open arms.

OK, medical tourism wasn’t born yesterday — insiders estimate there are thousands of companies doing this around the globe, many of them mom-and-pop operations — but pretty darn close. More importantly, it’s growing up quickly, with Formosa Medical Travel predicting a 14 percent growth in Asian markets alone from 2009 – 2012. In a year when any growth at all elicits applause, that’s a dazzling future. What’s more, Formosa says high-cost surgeries like orthopedic, cardiac, and cosmetic top the list of drivers for medical tourism.

So American-owned Formosa has quietly built a travel niche from this trend, signing agreements with leading hospitals in Taiwan, and recently earning the backing of the Taiwan External Trade Development Council. Taiwan’s health care system is currently considered  one of the most efficient in the world, with administrative costs below 2 percent.

“While the debate over health care reform in the United States continues, the costs of medical care in Taiwan remain among the lowest in the world,” said Don Gilliland, Formosa’s chief operating officer, in a November 30 press release.  For example, the price of total knee replacement surgery at a JCI-accredited hospital in Taiwan, including all surgical costs, VIP accommodations, concierge service, transportation, and round-trip airfare, is generally less than $15,000, while the price in the United States is often upwards of $60,000.

At the moment, Formosa specializes only in arrangements for knee and hip replacement surgeries. And, sticking to the traditional travel agency format, it does not charge a fee for its role in the planning…

Read Full Article

Article courtesy Uptake Travel Industry Blog

Medical Tourism Group From Mainland China Visits Taiwan

November 19th, 2009 by Formosa Medical Travel

On November 16th 2009,  a group of 30 Mainland Chinese arrived for a 9 day medical tourism trip in Kaohsiung, Taiwan.  The medical tourists received a number of different procedures, including dental, skin, eye and cosmetic surgery. There were also a number of Chinese medicine treatments.

The secretary general of the Kaohsiung Medical Tourism Promotion Association noted that Kaohsiung has an edge over Taipei because of lower prices and more tourism opportunities.

Taiwan is an up-and-coming player in the medical tourism industry. Many of the short-term opportunities are right in Taiwan’s geographic back yard. However, whether or not large numbers of Chinese citizens will leave the mainland for Taiwan in search of medical care remains to be seen.

Medical tourism to experience resurgence, says Deloitte

November 11th, 2009 by Formosa Medical Travel

In a new report, the Deloitte Center for Health Solutions projects medical tourism to rebound strongly from the effects of the economic recession in coming years.

The report, entitled “Medical Tourism: Update and Implications”, says that while outbound medical travel from the United States fell by nearly 14% between 2007 and 2009 as a result of the recession, it is predicted to show a strong resurgence as economic conditions improve. The number of outbound medical travelers could be as much as 5 million per year by 2017, the report suggests, if the industry continues to grow at the expected rate of 35% per year.

Paul H. Keckley, executive director of the Deloitte Center for Health Solutions,  expects outbound medical tourism to continue its rapid growth despite the efforts at healthcare reform in the United States. “There is nothing in current health reform bills that decelerates the cost of care,” said Keckley, “so that contributes to the appetite that people have.”

Healthcare costs will continue to rise by six percent per year for the next decade, the report says, making medical tourism an increasingly attractive option for the aging US population. With medical tourism “offering savings of up to 70 percent after travel expenses, we anticipate that the industry will recover from the current economic downturn,” said Heckley.  ”Medical tourism represents an important option for patient populations who need care but lack adequate out-of-pocket funds to afford a procedure in the U.S., or those who seek lower prices for purposes of savings.”

Medical tourism represents an important option for patient populations who need care but lack
adequate out-of-pocket funds to afford a procedure in the U.S., or those who seek lower prices
for purposes of savings.

Knee Replacement Alternatives

November 3rd, 2009 by Formosa Medical Travel

Knee Replacement Alternatives

There are a number of alternatives to knee replacement surgery that sufferers of osteoarthritis should consider before getting a total knee replacement. As the cost of knee replacement surgery increases in the United States, many people are exploring new methods for arthritis relief.


Most knee replacement alternatives focus on limiting pain, rather than treating the cause. Some options include anti-inflammatory medications, lifestyle changes, and other treatments – which can often reduce the pain caused by osteoarthritis, and delay the need for a knee replacement. In the intermediate stages of osteoarthritis, many patients are given joint fluid therapy, also known as “chicken shots” or “rooster juice“.  Chicken shots for knee pain relief are a currently a very popular alternative to total knee replacement surgery.


Cortisone shots and Synvisc injections are also often succesful in limiting knee pain in the short term. However, in many cases, patients who are seeking a long-term solution to osteoarthritis should consider surgical treatment.


Before getting total knee replacement surgery, consult your doctor about some of these less-expensive alternatives.

Healthcare Reform in the United States May Actually Increase Medical Tourism

October 13th, 2009 by Formosa Medical Travel

More medical tourists may also contribute to further globalization of lab testing

Medical tourism continues to be a force with the potential to exert significant influence on healthcare in the United States. For that reason, experts have weighed in recently on how efforts to reform healthcare may either inhibit or encourage growth in the number of Americans opting to become medical tourists.

Just as medical tourism has the potential to be transformative to certain aspects of healthcare here in this country, Dark Daily believes that medical tourism may also encourage greater globalization of pathology services and clinical laboratory testing. For both reasons, pathologists and clinical laboratory managers will find recent commentary to be enlightening…

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Article courtesy of

Medical Tourism in Taiwan

September 30th, 2009 by Formosa Medical Travel

At Formosa Medical Travel, we work on behalf of patients seeking affordable knee and hip replacement surgery abroad, connecting them with a network of world-class hospitals located in Taiwan. These facilities provide outstanding medical care while offering patients significant savings. We book patients’ surgery, transfer medical records, assist in finding flights and hotels, and provide concierge services to patients in Taiwan. There is no charge for our services.

With medical teams that speak fluent English and are trained and educated in the United States, American patients can have confidence that the quality of healthcare they will receive in Taiwan will meet or exceed that of the United States – at a fraction of the cost.

Formosa Medical Travel specializes in facilitating knee and hip replacement surgery, and nothing else. Since this is our only focus, we are able to provide our patients with a level of service for joint replacement surgery that is unparalleled in medical travel.

Unlike most medical travel facilitators, we do not offer a wide variety of procedures in a dozen different places. We operate in Taiwan, a modern, developed country, and we have close relationships with our network of hospitals and doctors.

Formosa Medical Travel works hard to ensure a comfortable and rewarding medical trip to Taiwan. We make traveling for medical care safe, easy, and affordable. After you get in touch with us via e-mail or phone, we will provide you with the information and guidance you need to choose a hospital and doctor. Then, we’ll assist you in requesting your surgery, transferring medical information, obtaining an evaluation from your medical team, booking an initial consultation, and scheduling your surgery. We will help you book your flight and hotel. When you arrive in Taiwan, we’ll be waiting for you at the airport. All necessary transportation will be arranged. We’ll take care of all the details – from your arrival to your departure.

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