Cosmetic surgery is at the forefront of a $60 billion medical tourism industry. Patients are now able to research options globally through the internet, and increasing numbers are seeking improved service, quality, and value through surgery overseas.
Medical tourism is the rapidly growing practice of traveling across international borders to obtain healthcare. Research has shown that the number of patients traveling abroad for medical services is increasing, with an estimated 14–16 million patients worldwide (1.4 million from the United States alone) seeking medical care abroad every year.
Breaking down procedures by sex reveals the most popular procedures in females were liposuction, Brazilian butt lift, tummy tuck, breast lift, and breast augmentation. The most popular procedures in males were liposuction, eyelid surgery, gynecomastia correction, facelift/neck lift, and facial fat grafting.
The American Society of Plastic Surgeons has signed formal “Global Partner” agreements with national plastic surgery societies around the world that have achieved a high standard in plastic surgery, providing patients with additional assurance regarding the quality of board-certified plastic surgeons in these partner countries. The Colombian Society for Plastic, Esthetic and Reconstructive Surgery is a Global Partner.
Global Statistics shows that Colombia ranks #1 globally in terms of medical tourism patients treated per plastic surgeon, #2 worldwide in plastic surgery procedures performed per plastic surgeon, and ranks as #9 in the world in the total volume of surgical procedures performed,
Colombian plastic surgeons are also ranked #1 globally in terms of medical tourism patients, with the average plastic surgeon performing 44 surgical procedures per year on foreign patients. Aside from the skills of the surgeons themselves, Colombia possesses an established tourism industry, strong intellectual capital, and modern hospitals.
The development of the health and wellness industry is a natural extension of that current infrastructure and the Colombian government has invested billions of dollars into improving the country’s medical infrastructure to provide a safe and tourist-friendly environment for health travelers.
The industry is government-led and private sector-driven and aims to provide the tourist to Colombia with physical invigoration, mental rejuvenation, cultural enrichment, and spiritual elevation. Costs are often 40%–70% less than in the United States and the proximity of Colombia coupled with an abundance of convenient flights makes travel easier than ever.
Read the full study by Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery – Global Open: May 2019