The International Medical Tourism Center announced Wednesday it has begun offering its services in Puerto Rico as part of its expansion from Costa Rica.
IMTC is the evolution of the company formerly known as Medical Tours Costa Rica, which has offered medical and dental travel services in that Central American nation for almost a decade and is now bringing its experience to Puerto Rico, where U.S. citizens can travel without a passport.
Puerto Rico has unique qualities to become an attractive destination for stateside patients, particularly U.S. and Canadian citizens, and for companies looking for high quality healthcare at an affordable cost, company officials said.
“Puerto Rico is the ideal destination for the U.S. market because of its proximity and easy access from many of the major cities, the fact that no passport is required and the healthcare system is required to follow the same standards as in the mainland U.S., but with costs that can be 30 percent to 70 percent lower for the patient,” said Bill Cook, partner in the IMTC.
The global market for medical tourism is expected to reach $100 billion in 2013, and in Costa Rica, where IMTC already has a strong presence, the medical tourism industry has grown to nearly $300 million.
It is especially attractive to U.S. employers as it offers them significant savings while keeping their employees within the U.S. healthcare system for procedures such as knee and hip replacements, IMTC executives further noted.
“We believe Puerto Rico can become an important destination for U.S. patients in need of surgeries such as knee and hip replacements as well as dental and cosmetic services,” he added.
The IMTC will provide consumers a wide variety of procedures and pricing alternatives by combining the offerings of both Puerto Rico and Costa Rica, which have excellent hospitals and bilingual doctors with vast experience and all certifications.
“With Puerto Rico, we’re revolutionizing the concept of ‘domestic medical tourism’ by offering the best of both worlds, since patients will receive the services outside of the continental U.S. but under the same conditions they would find at home at a much better price. With the experience we bring from Costa Rica, we will provide a level of service and comfort that will be very attractive to both self-insured companies and self-funded individual patients,” said Brad Cook, also a partner in the IMTC.
IMTC will also target the growing U.S. Hispanic market, because the island offers the uniqueness of a compatible culture and language but under the U.S. system. All of the company’s providers and hospitals are U.S. Board Certified and Joint Commission Accredited.