If you work at Serigraph, a specialty printer based in West Bend, Wisconsin, you will be part of the pilot program.  It starts in January and offers no out of pocket expenses for the employee.  Hospital are approved by the joint commission.  The rights and remedies statement below interesting as well, which country’s laws will apply?  Big question there.  Will we be seeing the big Blue Cross Medical transport jet with express service to India next? 

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of South Carolina, which is not part of WellPoint, already offers overseas care through Companion Global Healthcare.  Case managers it appears will take care of everything for you.  This is one more step being initiated to address rising health care costs in the US, but what happens as this grows?  There are other insurers already promoting tourism, some over the border to Mexico from the US as well.  Even though accredited by the Joint Commission, there can still be issues that arise after the fact and some of those stories are now beginning to emerge on the web as well, it’s almost like going to the craps table to a degree and rolling the dice for the sake of saving money.

The continued growth in this area will no doubt stand to bring additional pressure to further reduce the already low contracted rates paid to both physicians and hospitals here in the US, which has been slated as one of the major causes of hospital insolvency and bankruptcy.  BD 

WellPoint is testing the concept of arranging and paying for you and a companion to travel to India for a joint-replacement procedure that could cost a fraction of what it would at your local hospital.

Indianapolis-based health insurance giant WellPoint is jumping into the emerging world of "medical tourism" -- the practice in which U.S. patients cross international borders in search of cheaper medical care.

When asked about what legal recourse a patient unsatisfied with the surgical outcome would have, WellPoint spokeswoman Kristin Binns said patients are "entitled to all rights and remedies available under applicable law." She did not specify which nation's laws would apply, though.

WellPoint will try out 'medical tourism' | IndyStar.com | The Indianapolis Star

Related Reading:

Health Insurers Head to China
WellPoint settles Calif. lawsuit and Who’s going to China?
U.S. Health Insurers Look To China For Growth


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