The Medical Tourism Facilitator A Best Practices Guide to Healthcare Facilitation for International Patients

Renée-Marie Stephano – President
Medical Tourism Association

William Cook – Medical Tourism Training Instructor
Medical Tourism Association

A guide for any medical tourism facilitator, international patient coordinator or person considering offering facilitation services to international, expatriates, or traveling patients.

This book provides start to finish guidelines and best practices for getting your business started, creating your patient protocols and case management programs, and setting up healthcare networks, effectuating patient communication and education strategies, cultural competency and risk management considerations, marketing to patients, and working with hospitals.   In essence, The Medical Tourism Facilitator allows you to understand the entire international patient process.

This book is available at the Medical Tourism Association Store.

  • Learn how to develop your business and market
  • Understanding Best Practices
  • Looking for the return on your investment
  • Identifying current and emerging market trends in insurance, corporate benefits and cash paying patient bases



  • "After four years of research and review of medical tourism, I found this book to contain all of the fundamentals plus more in order for insurance companies, employers and agents to methodically move ahead in patient global migration. The importance of working with qualified facilitators is well described and lays the groundwork for such collaboration. A bible in this burgeoning industry."
    Armando Polanco – President of Texas Benefits
  • "This book is required reading for those in the medical tourism industry working as facilitators and those planning to be one. Medical tourism facilitation has a major role in this industry and being guided and informed cannot be over emphasized. Thank you, Renee-Marie and William!"
    Eva A. Trinidad – President of Philippine Medical Tourism, Inc
  • "The production of this Facilitator "best practices guidebook" is a critical step in the continued patient-friendly development of international medical tourism. This book should be considered required reading for everyone involved in or considering getting involved in a Medical Tourism program!"
    Jerry Turney – President of Consolidated Marketing Group
  • "This book provides great insight into the inner workings of a medical tourism facilitator."
    Tom O’hara – President of Surgical Trip, a Certified Medical Tourism Facilitator
  • “As more and more employers seek out information on Medical Travel benefits, they are finding that working with a Medical Travel Facilitator is the best option, and this book is a great resource for getting informed on facilitators and what they do best.”
    Jeff Carter – CEO of My Health Globe
  • "If you are searching for transparency, communication and education for any project concerning the medical tourism industry worldwide, you can find it all in one person: Reneé-Marie Stephano. Renée is not just the leader of the most incredible global trend but can inspire any initiative worldwide and provide the most accurate and comprehensive background, that is the most important for successful projects anywhere.”
    Glauco Fonseca – Director of Healthcare Brazil

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.