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Patterns of Service Differentiation Among Medical Tourism Facilitators

46 Pages Posted: 20 Sep 2010 Last revised: 12 May 2011

Lydia L. Gan

University of North Carolina at Pembroke; Medical Tourism Research Center

James R. Frederick

University of North Carolina (UNC) at Pembroke - Medical Tourism Research Center

Date Written: April 1, 2010

Abstract

This paper studies the nature of differentiation in the market for medical tourism facilitators in the United States. Medical tourism facilitators in the United States resemble a monopolistically competitive industry. They choose to differentiate their services in several ways, including by the scope of countries and hospitals which they use, the scope of the treatments in which they specialize, the extent of involvement of medical professionals in the company, and the kinds of ancillary services they offer. The authors perform an exploratory study of the differentiation among 46 such firms. Using principal-components analysis, they detect three components: an emphasis on providing a broad selection of destinations, an emphasis on physician's concerns, and an emphasis on the travel aspects of medical tourism. Cluster analysis separates the firms’ profiles into six types.

Keywords: Medical tourism, healthcare tourism, medical tourism agents, differentiation, principal component analysis, cluster analysis

JEL Classification: I11, L11

Suggested Citation

Gan, Lydia L. and Frederick, James R., Patterns of Service Differentiation Among Medical Tourism Facilitators (April 1, 2010). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1679511 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1679511

Lydia L. Gan (Contact Author)

University of North Carolina at Pembroke ( email )

P.O. Box 1510
Pembroke, NC 28372-1510
United States
9107754265 (Phone)
9105216750 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.uncp.edu/business/

Medical Tourism Research Center ( email )

P O Box 1510
One University Drive
Pembroke, NC 28372
United States
910-521-6592 (Phone)
910-521-6750 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.uncp.edu/mtrc/

James R. Frederick

University of North Carolina (UNC) at Pembroke - Medical Tourism Research Center ( email )

P O Box 1510
One University Drive
Pembroke, NC 28372
United States

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