Medical Tourism Journeys coordinates out of town medical care for patients seeking elective medical and dental treatments away from their local care providers.
Choose your own provider or learn about the pre-screened, pre-inspected medical, dental and rehabilitation clinics, hospitals and specialists in our Globally-integrated Health Delivery System.
40 years of incomparable experience with health and wellness travel coordination
In the late 1970s, Maria Todd, now the CEO of Mercury Healthcare International, began coordinating medical travel for clients of the national travel agency where she worked as a professional travel counselor at their national headquarters location.
After more than 350 clients asked her for help with flight reservations, hotel accommodations, driving itineraries, and help to plan their medical travel she realized that there was a need for specialization in this niche area of travel planning. The travel plans were particularly critical because people planning travel to access and return from medical procedures had special needs for which general travel agents were not trained.
All of a sudden it mattered which side of the aircraft they were seated, how close they were to the toilet, how they ascended and descended stairs into and out of the aircraft. It mattered if they arrived at the airport for their flight and the flight was late or cancelled, or encountered a change in itinerary due to weather or mechanical problems affecting all downline connections and planned transfers and appointments on arrival.
It mattered if the bathroom had safety grab bars, wheelchair accessibility, telephones in the bathrooms, and how high the beds and mattresses were. It was critical to know exactly the brands and ingredients of soaps were being used in the hotel laundry, if there were fresh flowers and organic plant materials in the rooms, and throughout the hotels and the grounds outside. It mattered what was in the ingredients of the soaps and shampoo amenities were provided in the bathrooms. In the 1970s, before the Americans with Disabilities Act was made a law (1990) there weren't wheelchair ramps or wheelchair accessible hotel rooms, and many barriers existed in hotels in every category. Without pre-inspection and rigid criteria for medical travel appropriateness, guests might be stuck in rooms that didn't meet their needs for long stays while they recuperated outside the hospital. Or worse, kept in the hospital for longer periods than medically appropriate, where they were exposed to many risks of hospital acquired infections, and forced to watch television on screens that were 8-12". For every day in a hospital bed, it took clients as long as three days to recuperate and get their strength and stamina back to be up and about and return to their routine activities. The inactivity caused other complications like blood clots in their legs that could break off and lodge in their lungs causing risk of instant death.
The foods available in the hotel restaurants and other food and beverage outlets became a concern for long-stay guests on special diets with allergies and sensitivities to certain ingredients that conflicted with their medications, or upset stomachs while taking pain medicines. The Hotel "Walk Policy" a standard business practice of hotels is to oversell its rooms by a small percentage took on new significance if a medical traveler intended to check in to a hotel room and was turned away because the pre-inspected, pre-approved medically appropriate hotel was oversold and could not accommodate them onsite. Standard safety procedures in the event of fires, floods, hurricanes, tornadoes, and other emergencies for able-bodied guests could leave the medical travel patient helpless and trapped if assigned to a room on a high floor where emergency fire and rescue apparatus couldn't reach them, or if the pool or other structures posed as obstacles to hoist ladders from aerial fire trucks.
Maria Todd began writing her proprietary medical travel criteria for her clients' safety and security. These standards were applied to the hotels she inspected and the flights she booked for her travel clients based on their medical condition both before and after their treatments. To better accommodate her clients individual health travel needs, in the early 1980s, she sought additional training, first as a surgical nurse and then onto advanced degrees in hospital and healthcare administration, where she began adding the health services delivery criteria to the specialized medical travel planning she had been doing for more than 10 years.
Our Approved Provider Network
Thirty years later, Maria Todd filed for a trademark registration for a new term of art, the globally-integrated health delivery system® to describe the network of healthcare delivery providers (hospitals, clinics, dentists, doctors, rehab centers, etc.) organized specifically for domestic and international individual health travel consumers and insurers. Care is delivered more efficiently and continuity of care is easier to manage regardless of what stage (pre-operative, destination care, or post-operative aftercare back home) the client may be. Higher-quality, lower cost patient-centric care is delivered regardless of where the patient seeks care, consultation, diagnosis or surgical intervention; across the street, across the state, or across international borders. The trademark registration was received from the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) in 2010. No other medical tourism company has gone this far to organize care coordination to this extent, anywhere in the world.
The proprietary standards and network participation criteria that Maria Todd began to develop and refine her network of providers in the 1970s are applied consistently across all Approved Providers in the Mercury Health Travel network. No marketing fees or kickback referral commissions are paid to Mercury Health Travel or Medical Tourism Journeys because the firm works as a patient advocate, not the supplier's marketing agent. That's a differentiator in the industry because currently, the majority of certified and non-certified medical tourism "facilitators" worldwide are paid 20-30% of the fee the patient pays to the hospital, doctor or clinic as a kickback for sourcing referrals. In other medical tourism companies, clients are steered to the highest paying supplier rather than to the most appropriate supplier for their particular needs, usually by individuals with a website and no clinical or travel planning training or experience. They capture the interest of a prospect, obtain some basic information, obtain price quotes, and steer referrals to their suppliers that pay the highest marketing fees ("kickbacks"). Many don't plan the travel or inspect the hotels because without the training and experience, they don't appreciate just how critical these component parts of the medical travel journey can be. The majority of them also don't have the required credentials and registrations to sell or book travel arrangements, so they cannot earn commissions paid by airlines and accommodation partners.
Fast forward to 2017, to the 40th anniversary of her first medical travel client journey
Maria Todd now owns Mercury Health Travel a medical travel consulting firm for corporate-funded group health benefit plans operated by self-insured employers and labor unions, Global Health Sources, a specialized consulting firm which helps hospitals, hotels, and government authorities around the world to prepare for success with medical and dental tourism startup, marketing, quality and safety protocols and training, market penetration and ongoing business development. Meanwhile, Medical Tourism Journeys helps individual consumers access specialized, highly-complex, medical and dental care, preventive checkups, clinical trials for experimental and investigational treatments and medications, hydrotherapeutic spa and wellness services, and physical rehabilitation and substance abuse rehabilitation programs anywhere in the world. As the client's advocate, Maria and her team answer questions about hospitals, clinics, destinations and individual specialists from personal interactions and experiences and will coordinate care and travel to any provider, in any specialty, at any destination in the world upon the clients' requests.
Pricing for our Services
The Medical Tourism Journeys business model charges the client a nominal fee which covers the initial consultation with the client to learn their needs and narrow down the appropriate network providers to meet clients' needs, obtain price quotes and coordinate live interviews with providers via online telehealth consultations. If the client chooses to move forward with the decision to travel for healthcare, a case management fee is charged to manage all pre-departure, destination and post-operative care coordination, appointment setting, medical records transfers, travel planning, ground services at destination, follow up care continuity and outcomes monitoring. Fees vary according to the procedure and case management complexity. For example, the fee to coordinate a minor cosmetic surgery procedure that requires very little case management is far less than the case management fee to coordinate a complex organ transplant that requires donor and recipient surgeries and care coordination for two patients.
We've been coordinating medical tourism journeys to our clients' chosen health and wellness Centers of Excellence since 1977. Our clients return year after year to plan subsequent visits to their chosen health and wellness Centers of Excellence or to discover new destinations from our vast network of carefully screened providers, health facilities and wellness retreats. We've grown by word of mouth referrals to serve thousands of medical, dental and wellness travelers over the years.
Our team includes Medical Tourism Journey Managers™, Destination Guest Services Managers, internal healthcare professionals, regional medical directors, professional travel agents, experienced healthcare and hotel site inspectors, and amazing team of support staff -- all with one common goal: To pamper and delight you and anticipate your every medical tourism journey need and concern.
Learn more about pricing and services to meet your unique needs by calling us at 800.727.4160.
There is always someone on duty to take your call twenty four hours a day, seven days a week. We don't believe that your calls should ever be sent to voice mail, so we don't even have voice mail set up on our system.
Our Promise to You
We promise you'll be delighted with the way we combine carefully coordinated travel to your chosen destination, rigorously inspected health facilities and accommodation, and carefully vetted doctors, nurses, and other healthcare professionals, with an opportunity to enjoy the hospitality of your destination's people, its culture and its history, the rest and rejuvenation of its accommodations, the unique flavors and recipes of local and regional gastronomy, and the precision and compassion its health services providers.
Each time you plan a medical tourism journey with us, we promise to create a unique experience with memories you'll treasure and enjoy sharing with others.
Our provider network:
Our globally integrated health delivery system® was awarded a trademark registration by the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) in 2010 because of its unique design and advanced globally integrated health delivery and hospitality infrastructure.
Our international provider and supplier network has been rigorously vetted and inspected to ensure that all network providers meet or exceed standards and criteria we've established and continuously updated for the past 34 years.
To become a network provider, healthcare, spa and hospitality suppliers must have already achieved international accreditation by recognized quality and safety accreditors, in accordance with standards set forth by ISQua, ESPA, ISO, and other equivalent accrediting and certifying bodies that we recognize. Our network of Centers of Excellence and wellness destinations spans 110 countries on six continents. In addition to external validation through recognized accrediting and certifying bodies, each destination provider and supplier is reviewed and re-assessed periodically to ensure that quality, safety and service levels are consistently maintained across our globally integrated health delivery system® according to our proprietary criteria for network admission and participation.
Last, but not by any means least... we don't accept commissions for referrals and patient brokering from any provider or supplier. US regulations prohibit the payment or receipt of finder's fees and commissions for referrals where medical services are involved. Rest assured that when you decide to arrange your medical tourism journey with us, you won't be referred to a destination or supplier who pays the highest fees or commissions.
Our business model:
We provide a professional service that begins with the careful and comprehensive screening and inspections of all candidate hospitals, clinics, and healthcare facilities, review of the professional training, credentials and work experience of network healthcare providers, site inspections at all hotels and spas, airport inspections, car and driver inspections, and training of our Destination Guest Services Managers and Medical Tourism Journey Managers™. This is how our globally integrated health delivery system® takes shape and maintains its standards of operation.
When you call us to arrange a medical tourism journey for you, we listen to your needs and concerns. We don't expect you to choose from providers in 110 countries. When you tell us your preferences, we'll suggest a short list of destinations, providers and unique destination experiences that align with your lifestyle, budget, interests and other requirements. Once you select a destination and your chosen health and wellness providers, we arrange every detail of your medical tourism journey to your specifications. This includes all travel planning, healthcare and wellness appointments, ground transportation, tourist activities, and aftercare, if any, upon your return.
In accordance with our quality management system, we measure and monitor clinical outcomes, client satisfaction, and other metrics for our internal quality and safety program and ongoing continuous improvement activities.
A modest, all-inclusive and transparent service fee covers these costs that is often far less than the 20-30% commissions embedded into the prices quoted by our competitors. At Medical Tourism Journeys, you'll pay less per journey than most of the advertised prices on the internet and enjoy more amenities and a higher level of quality and safety and attention to detail.