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U.S. Medical Refugees Flee to India

Posted on Dec 12, 2006

An increasing number of the 46 million Americans without health insurance have begun fleeing to places as far away as India to get lifesaving medical treatments.


CHENNAI, India—As startling numbers of Americans go without health insurance, more of them see their only hope in fleeing to far-flung nations like India for life-saving medial treatments.

The dearth of affordable health insurance has engendered a new breed of what the New England Journal of Medicine classifies as “medical refugees”—patients traveling abroad for heart surgery and other crucial procedures—that has grown sharply in the past two years.

In 2005, 46 million Americans—or about 15 percent of the total population—lacked health insurance, according to a Census Bureau study. For families who don’t qualify for Medicare but can’t afford private coverage, a sudden accident or illness could lead to financial disaster.


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By Jeanne, December 13, 2006 at 11:23 am Link to this comment
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They are fleeing because we have the finest health system in the world. Why India you ask? Because it’s all been outsourced.

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By HeadlessHessian, December 13, 2006 at 8:53 am Link to this comment
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And as long as these folks vote republiCANT we will never get universal health care, ala Canada.
I would never go to India for medical treatment…clik my heals ‘there is no place like home’.
The time has come for the USA to commit to a national health care system.


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By rabblerowzer, December 13, 2006 at 5:34 am Link to this comment
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As a result of predatory pricing, millions of Americans have been priced out of the healthcare market, but greedy doctors, insurance companies, hospitals and drug companies aren’t seriously worried, yet. Sooner or later though, their going to feel the squeeze. Maybe then they will allow us to have Universal Health Care.

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By Phred, December 13, 2006 at 5:23 am Link to this comment
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I live outside of the wonderful USA and have for some 20+ years.  I just found out that my ‘merican health insurance has decided that ‘overseas’ medical treatment is no longer covered… but they sure keep sending the bills wanting me to pay them for non-existent coverage… wonderful!!

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By Bert, December 12, 2006 at 1:16 pm Link to this comment
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Be sure to thank your health insurance ‘specialist’ for the rich, screw everybody else…

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