What Traveling for Medical Treatment Tells Us

For many, a trip to the doctor may seem like nothing more than a second thought. All you have to do is go for a regular check-up according to your work’s health insurance plan. Luckily, you’re healthy enough that that is all you need to do. For others, however, regular doctor visits are necessary simply to keep them alive. Whether it be for cancer, diabetes, or some other terrible condition, there are families who have to see the doctor sometimes more than once a month. In these cases, it is not uncommon to see that families choose to travel further distances in order to receive their medical care. Here are a few reasons why they may be traveling for medical treatment and the implications.

1. Best Treatment

In regards to cancer, there are certain institutions that have a better-trained staff to deal with particular ailments. Families who want the best treatment possible for their loved ones are obviously more inclined to attend these facilities even if they are hundreds of miles away. Health and life are important, and money is of little consequence if it means that seeing this specific doctor or surgeon can save their loved one’s life.

Similar to treatment for a malignancy, addiction treatment is something which someone might travel long distances to receive. An LA detox facility is likely to treat patients from all over the United States due to the high quality of care it provides.

This travel, however, may not be the most convenient, especially if there is an emergency. It says the problem is too challenging for local doctors and specialists, who are either too inexperienced or too overwhelmed to properly treat the issue. Whether it’s fighting cancer or achieving long-term sober living, the need for a solution is so great that journeying across the country is considered a worthwhile inconvenience.

This could mean that the government in question does not allocate enough of its resources to the funding of medicine and healthcare. Families should not have to travel long distances just to receive care for an individual because they are the only ones that have some knowledge of the best treatment possible. Instead, such education and resources should be widespread, so that families everywhere can easily take their loved one for the required treatment.

In short, a lack of funding and medical research could be a result of families feeling the need to travel long distances for the best care.

2. Cost

For many families, the cost of hospitals and doctors is too high. This is especially true for families who do not have health insurance covered by their employer or make too much to qualify for healthcare from the federal or state government, but not enough to actually afford the healthcare programs available. As such, they are forced to find a doctor that can give them the cheapest treatment possible. In some cases, this means that they might have to travel further than they would originally like.

This can be compared to those who have a great deal of wealth. Regardless of their location, because they have ample money to spend on hospital visits, they can easily travel to their desired hospital and receive treatment. Transportation means little to them because they can easily afford that and the doctor visit.

Clearly, there is a dichotomy at play here.

Trends and Patterns

As health care costs increase, those who lack money are the ones that are hurt. By examining the patterns of travel, the disparity is glaringly obvious