The introduction of developing countries into the dental business
The past half decade has seen an incredible boom in dental tourism. Flocks of people from developed states such as England, Ireland, France and the United States, are striving to find an affordable yet high quality form of having dental treatment and dental implants.
The current economic crisis along with the increasing cost of dental care in most of the Western European countries and North America force 350 thousand people each month to travel to Mexico, India, Hungary, Thailand and Poland, in order to find an alternative solution to save on the cost of their dental therapy. Is it any wonder then that dentistry is the only sector that managed to maintain a continuous development during the recession?
Dental implant treatments are among the most popular dental services for which medical tourists are willing to travel thousands of miles. In their home countries they have to face the lack of proper NHS dentists, extremely long waiting lists and the huge cost of going private.
It may not be much of a surprise that many are beginning to discover that certain countries offer exactly the same services of the same standards to which they are accustomed, at a much lower price. As dental tourism is becoming a more and more widespread phenomenon, implantology clinics of the destination countries are providing their clients with state-of-the-art technology, specially trained dentists and nurses as well as high safety and health standards.
Having dental implant treatment far away from home
Dental implants are screw-shaped prosthetic devices made of titanium or zirconia, designed to support restorations that replace missing teeth. They serve as tooth roots and unlike dentures and bridges, implants are not attached to neighbouring teeth and thus feel like real teeth.
The procedure is typically carried out in stages and uncomfortable though that may seem, there is a common practice to arrange the process of the therapy. A comprehensive treatment plan is developed during an initial consultation, at times even before departure. Depending on the number of implants to be applied and the extent of complementary treatments such as sinus lifting or teeth whitening, two or three separate five-day visits are required within a period of three to nine months.
Reducing dental bills by up to 70 per cent
As the hourly wages and rents in the destinations of dental travel tend to be far below those of developed countries, there are huge differences in the price of dental procedures. By way of illustration, while patients may have to pay as much as £2,500 for each implant in Britain, they are available from £500 in Hungary.
Factoring in all the travel and accommodation expenses that could mean a saving of up to a quite impressive 75 per cent. What is more, a visit to the dentist may be part of a holiday or a family trip, with the opportunity to explore a foreign culture.
The European Commission plans to enact legislation to allow patients from EU countries to receive medical treatment in any other member states and reclaim at most as much of the money spent on health care as the same procedure would cost in their own country. Since dental implants are mainly considered to be reconstructive dentistry treatments and dental tourism is based on finding affordable dental prices, there should be no trouble having the full amount reimbursed.