Developing an International Patient Center | A Guide to Creating the Best Patient Experience

Authors:
Renée-Marie Stephano – President
Medical Tourism Association

William Cook – Medical Tourism Training Instructor
Medical Tourism Association

A guide for any hospital, medical center, clinic or physician interested in developing an international patient program and attracting patients.   This book provides a fresh approach to getting your global patient program underway; developing streamlines, patient protocols and case management programs to produce better outcomes, cultural consideration and the special needs and expectations of international, expatriate, and traveling patients.

This book is available at the Medical Tourism Association Store.

Learn How to:

  • Create Streamlined Patient Management Protocols
  • Effectuate Good Continuum of Care
  • Attract the Market Best Suited for Your Business such as Corporate, Insurance, or Governments
  • Identify Current and Emerging Market  Trends
  • Secure Return on Investment
  • Manage Global Billing Practices
  • Increase Word of Mouth Marketing  Through Patient Testimonials and Referrals
  • Create Travel Services for Patients to Assist with Visas, Interpretation, Transportation and Companions from Patient Successes

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TESTIMONIALS

  • "With over 7 years of experience dealing with international patients, I firmly believe this book leads global healthcare providers in the right direction of creating international patients center programs and services for attracting patients, as well as establishes international standardization to reach the expectations and requirements of international patients. I would like to thank Renée-Marie Stephano and William Cook for their contribution and passion to Medical Tourism."
    Hwang (James) LEE – Head Manager of International Patients Center for Wooridul Spine Hospital, Korea
  • “In our efforts for the foundation of the Porto Alegre Healthcare Cluster, Renée Stephano was of decisive role in the process since the beginning. Our project is becoming a reality and the insights Renée provided were transformed into strong strategies. We truly believe that our cluster will fly high with Renée’s presence and intelligence.”
    Luiz Fernando Moraes – Secretary of Tourism for Porto Alegre, Brazil
  • "Medical Tourism is the new hot topic in healthcare throughout the world. Hospitals and clinics in many countries are taking steps in creating dedicated departments for their foreign patients. In this book Renée-Marie Stephano and William Cook have done an excellent job of sharing their knowledge and providing a road-map to developing a successful international patient center. It is a Must Read book on your list. Congratulations!"
    Dr. Zoumanan Debe & Dr. Antonia Arnaert – Debson Global Health LLC
  • “Renée-Marie Stephano and William Cook have done an excellent job of sharing their knowledge and providing a roadmap to developing a successful international patient center.”
    Carola Cid – Administrative Director of Chihuahua Oncology Center
  • "Everybody knows that having a Medical Tourism program now is a smart and necessary decision. Thanks to Renée-Marie and William we were able to deeply understand what it is all about. Whoever wants to play in the major leagues and not be late or delayed must accept the challenge. Do not fall asleep, globalization is a fact and it come up for staying..."
    Daniel Vasquez Ger – Director Comercial of Hospital Austral, Argentina
  • "A perfect book for anyone who is interested in developing an international patient program. This book shows you a road map to creating a global patient program and a streamlined patient protocol management. It also helps you learn all the things that need to be prepared for launching international medical tourism at your medical center, hospital or in your destination."
    Masato Takamatsu – CEO of Japan Tourism Marketing Co.
  • “Global Healthcare management is one of the most rapidly growing industries in the world, and Renée-Marie Stephano’s role in understanding and managing that industry is fundamental. Renée-Marie Stephano and William Cook have done an excellent job in providing the essential guidelines and roadmap to the development of successful international patient care. I recommend this book to every institution working to have a place in Global Healthcare Management"
    Dr. Abdalla Bashir – General Manager of Jordan Hospital
  • “This book provides great insight into the core of an international patient center. The Emirate of Dubai aspires to develop a comprehensive world-class service to cover the needs of its people and to position Dubai as a global destination for medical care. Learning and understanding the market competences of Medical Tourism and its cultural impact is one of the importances this book has given.”
    Laila Al Jassmi – CEO of Health Policy & Strategy Sector of Dubai Health Authority

Build a highway not a path – Excerpt from the book

If you want to take advantage of any opportunity then you’ve got to take action…open the door so to speak. Don’t make the mistake of assuming international patients are going to beat a path to your door just because you have a pretty hospital or great physicians. The truth is a path just won’t do. If you want to be successful you are going to have to build a four lane highway with well-lit signs, nice exit ramps, and a whole bunch of convenient rest stops.

Whisper whisper….here’s my little secret: you must make it easy and pleasant for your target market to use your medical services. That’s about all there is to it. In fact, if you can truly put this advice to practice, then there is no need for you to read the rest of this guide…that’s right put it down…you in the aqua blue shirt, I said down!

As you are still reading, I can assume that you want to learn how to make it easy and pleasant for your target market to use your medical services (thanks a lot, now I have to spend countless nights writing this book just for you…). Just poking some fun at you really…I actually feel honored to be given the opportunity to share some of my insights and experience about creating a successful international program. These insights have been gleaned through trial and error managing hundreds of international patients.

Do I have the process down perfect? No…it is a constant cycle of improving and perfecting. But what I can offer you in this guide is advice for quickly putting your own international program into place without going through the trial and error process I had to go through. Sound good to you? Then let’s begin our journey together with…A Tale of Two Hospitals.

Some readers may say: “Why do I need an international patient program anyway? Can’t I just have a few people in marketing take charge and leave it at that? We have a great hospital and a high percentage of our staff is bilingual. Why go through all the work of developing a ‘program’ if our current staff is doing just fine?”

If you have a system that is working then more power to you. But I would urge you to grab a magnifying glass and delve a little deeper to see where you can improve. Who knows, you might discover that a little tweaking to your website will double the number of international patients confirming procedures at your hospital. Maybe your current follow-up process has broken links which are costing you patients and hurting your hospital’s image. You might even discover that your “system” is not really a system and that any international patients you do receive are due either to disjointed efforts or blind luck.

It’s one thing to receive a few international patients here and there. If that’s your goal then I wouldn’t worry too much about developing an international patient program (you’ll do okay with a couple people answering emails). However, if you’ve picked up this guide it is a pretty sure bet that you are looking for something more. You are probably tired of hearing about the latest medical tourism forecasts and instead, want to be willing, able and ready to attract and service your own international patient clientele.

But just in case you are still having a few doubts, I will provide some compelling reasons. No wait…instead of giving you a boring list of reasons for implementing an international patient program, lets make this process a little more interesting and worthwhile.