Jeremy Snyder, Valorie A. Crooks, Rory Johnston; Perceptions of the Ethics of Medical Tourism: Comparing Patient and Academic Perspectives. Public Health Ethics 2011; 5 (1): 38-46. doi: 10.1093/phe/phr034
Medical tourism is a practice, whereby individuals travel across national borders with the intention of receiving medical care. Medical tourists are motivated to travel abroad by a number of factors, including the affordability of care abroad, access to treatments not available at home, and wait times for care at home. In this article, we share the findings of interviews conducted with 32 Canadian medical tourists with the aim of developing a better understanding of medical tourism, the ethical issues it raises for public health within Canada and other source countries for medical tourists, and to identify research gaps and policy responses to this practice. While patient and academic perspectives overlap in several regards, we suggest areas in which academic consideration of the ethical issues raised by medical tourism can be informed by patient perspectives.