Facing poor healthcare conditions, Romanians seek medical help abroad. Romanians top the medical tourism ranking in Austria

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Amid concerning statistics and realities on Romania’s poor medical system, more and more Romanians seek medical aid abroad. For instance, according to statistics released by the Vienna’s Chamber of Commerce, Romanians top the medical tourist ranking in Austria.

The Chamber, which also has a division on medical tourism, says that 4,000 Romanian underwent medical treatment in the private hospitals in Austria last year, while other 12,000 Romanians were treated in the Austrian public hospitals, which is double than in 2016.

Romanians paid about EUR 250 million for tests and treatment in Austria.

60% of the Romanian patients were asking for innovative treatments against cancer, 10% have required checks or a second opinion, while 30% treated their various affections. Hospitals in Austria have hired Romanian translators.

In Austria, medical tourism amounts to 25% of the services provided by private and public medical units.

On the other hand, back home, we “boast” the weakest medical system in Europe. The 2017 Euro Health Consumer Index shows again Romania at the bottom of the ranking, with scores less than 500 points.

Practically, Romania ranks last, the 34th in 34 countries, scoring 439 points, even worse than Albania and Montenegro. “Romania does have severe problems with the management of its entire public sector. In healthcare, discrimination of minority groups such as Roma (3½ -4% of the population) shows as poor Outcomes ratios, which in the EHCI 2017 is unfortunately punished harder than in previous editions,” says the Index.

The report also states that Romania, next to Albania and Bulgaria, is suffering “from an antiquated healthcare structure, with a high and costly ratio of in-patient care over out-patient care”.

The Netherlands, Switzerland, Denmark, Norway and Luxembourg are topping the Index, grabbing the top five positions.

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