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Why Medical Tourism Facilitators Fail

Maria Todd
March 16, 2013

Why Medical Tourism Facilitators Fail

Maria Todd explains why so many medical tourism facilitators fail to successfully sustain business operations and viability growth - and what can be done to better prepare to succeed.

Maria Todd

March 16, 2013
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  1. MERCURY ADVISORY GROUP Copyright 2013. Mercury Advisory Group. All rights

    reserved. WHYSo Many Medical Tourism Facilitators Fail
  2. MERCURY ADVISORY GROUP Copyright 2013. Mercury Advisory Group. All rights

    reserved. A common origin I became ill abroad; had to have surgery in a foreign place; survived Other people should consider this option for less expensive care Make a website so people can buy medical tourism packages; print business cards Go to conferences and meet hospitals Invitations to fam tours to exotic places for free! Send out contracts via email and they come back signed Make lots of money referring clients to providers I represent Average life span: 6 months
  3. MERCURY ADVISORY GROUP Copyright 2013. Mercury Advisory Group. All rights

    reserved. Story Outline • Anticipation stage: the hero is young, reckless and transported into a new world • Initial Fascination: At first, the hero is excited or fascinated because the new world is puzzling and unfamiliar • Frustration Stage: Gradually the mood changes to frustration, difficulty or oppression • Nightmare Stage: The shadow begins to dominate • Thrilling Escape and Return: Just when the threat is closing in, the hero escapes
  4. MERCURY ADVISORY GROUP Copyright 2013. Mercury Advisory Group. All rights

    reserved. Anticipation stage: • Our new fledgling facilitator is enthusiastic, inexperienced, and transported into a new world • The media talks about medical tourism every day in Google alerts • Conferences about medical tourism are all over the place • There’s a big, huge, medical tourism association to join • Put up a website and join some groups on Linked In and the Internet • Everybody wants cheaper healthcare, right? • Millions of people will find my website; some will buy my services
  5. MERCURY ADVISORY GROUP Copyright 2013. Mercury Advisory Group. All rights

    reserved. Initial Fascination: • At first, the facilitator is excited or fascinated because the new world is puzzling and unfamiliar • How difficult can it be? The media says medical tourism is gaining in popularity everywhere! • Deloitte says there is huge opportunity -- 35% CAGR, whatever that means! • If I can get 15% commissions on 4 cases per month, you can quit your day job Rationale: [(4x$10,000) *.15 = $6,000) per month] • I should easily be able to close 4 clients per week! • I’ll be rich and successful in short order
  6. MERCURY ADVISORY GROUP Copyright 2013. Mercury Advisory Group. All rights

    reserved. The Business Plan • Buy a business plan online • Buy a logo and some stock images about medical tourism • Set up a website, use cell phone as contact number • Print business cards, establish email • Surf the web for a model facilitator contract, have attorney create one • Join the association, put their logo on my site – so I look official to others • Join the Better Business Association, put their logo on my site – so I look credible
  7. MERCURY ADVISORY GROUP Copyright 2013. Mercury Advisory Group. All rights

    reserved. Frustration Stage: Gradually the mood changes to frustration • Websites ≠ Traffic • Contracts ≠ Product • Site visitors ≠ Sales volumes • Provider websites ≠ Reality • Not all accredited hospitals appropriate for medical tourism • Not all medical tourism destinations are safe • Not all physicians deliver quality • Not all cases should be attempted by beginners • Not all hospitals should attempt all procedures • Competition is fierce
  8. MERCURY ADVISORY GROUP Copyright 2013. Mercury Advisory Group. All rights

    reserved. Nightmare Stage: • The reality of impending failure begins to dominate • No calls from the website • No differentiation from other facilitators • No means of capturing market share • Hospital suppliers compete directly on price and service • Expenses mounting without return on investment • Time to renew association membership subscriptions....value? • Time to renew domain /web hosting account • Is this really an opportunity?
  9. MERCURY ADVISORY GROUP Copyright 2013. Mercury Advisory Group. All rights

    reserved. Dodging the Bankruptcy Bullet: Just when the threat is closing in, the facilitator escapes
  10. MERCURY ADVISORY GROUP Copyright 2013. Mercury Advisory Group. All rights

    reserved. What went wrong?
  11. MERCURY ADVISORY GROUP Copyright 2013. Mercury Advisory Group. All rights

    reserved. In a business so highly publicized by the media, why doesn’t everyone succeed? Medical tourism business is not as simple as it seems • Launch their business on a “whim” with a web domain and no real business plan or strategy to maximize competitive advantage • Don’t understand the complex world of “health care” delivery • Lack formal business administration experience or education • Lack formal logistics training and experience • Lack medical terminology, anatomy, physiology, and medical procedures knowledge • Have never purchased and/or reviewed the accreditation standards and only assume what accreditation signifies • Undercapitalized to sustain business operations and slow periods
  12. MERCURY ADVISORY GROUP Copyright 2013. Mercury Advisory Group. All rights

    reserved. How to Prepare ….for success as a medical tourism facilitator
  13. MERCURY ADVISORY GROUP Copyright 2013. Mercury Advisory Group. All rights

    reserved. How to Prepare Learn about Medicine & Healthcare • Terminology, Anatomy, Physiology • Procedures and Treatments /Technologies • Quality & Safety, Accreditation • Healthcare Business Operations Learn about Travel and Logistics • Travel & Tourism • Visa & Immigration • Geography and Airline Routes • Cultural and Legal Issues • Travel Planning for Disabled & Infirmed • All the moving parts
  14. MERCURY ADVISORY GROUP Copyright 2013. Mercury Advisory Group. All rights

    reserved. How to Prepare Learn about Business Startup • Business Plan Development • Feasibility Study / Market Analysis • Business Risk Mitigation • Operational Plan • Growth Strategy • Advertising and Consumer Behavior • Tax and Accounting
  15. MERCURY ADVISORY GROUP Copyright 2013. Mercury Advisory Group. All rights

    reserved. How to Prepare Learn about Legal Compliance • Web Content Copyright • Internet Privacy & Security • Medical Records Management • Tax and International Commerce Regulations • Dispute Resolution and Professional Liability • International Contracting with Suppliers
  16. MERCURY ADVISORY GROUP Copyright 2013. Mercury Advisory Group. All rights

    reserved. How to Prepare Learn about Marketing Strategy • Competitive Advantage • Competitive Rivalry within the Industry • Threat of Substitution • Threat of New Entrants • Leverage / Bargaining Power of Suppliers Competitive Advantage Competitive Rivalry within the Industry Threat of Substitution Threat of New Entrants Leverage / Bargaining Power of Suppliers Porter’s Five Forces
  17. MERCURY ADVISORY GROUP Copyright 2013. Mercury Advisory Group. All rights

    reserved. How to Prepare Technological factors · New innovations and discoveries · Pace of technological innovations and advances · Pace of technological obsolescence · New technological platforms (e.g. eHealth, mHealth) Environmental factors · Environmental protection laws · Waste disposal laws · Energy consumption regulation · Popular attitude towards the environment Legal factors · Employment regulations · Competitive regulations · Health and safety regulations · Product regulations Political factors · Stability of government · Social policies: (e.g. social welfare etc.) · Trade regulations: (e.g. the EU & NAFTA) · Tax policies · Entry mode regulations Economic factors · Disposable income of buyers · Credit accessibility · Unemployment rates · Interest rates · Inflation Social Factors · Population demographics: (e.g. aging population) · Distribution of Wealth · Changes in lifestyles and trends · Educational levels PESTEL Framework Discover the main drivers of change that may affect business strategies, and to discover the factors most likely to influence the performance of the business.
  18. MERCURY ADVISORY GROUP Copyright 2013. Mercury Advisory Group. All rights

    reserved. How to Prepare Identify Your Target Medical Tourism Market Objective: Market Segmentation: Aggregating prospective buyers into groups that have common needs and will respond similarly to a marketing action. Market Segments: Relatively homogenous collection of prospective buyers Product differentiation: 1. Using different marketing mixes to help gain competitive advantage with a specific segment. 2. Selling two or more products with different features targeted to different market segments. Market Segmentation Stresses 2 Things: Grouping people or organizations according to similarity of needs and the benefits desired Needs and benefits must be related to specific, tangible marketing actions Where the Rubber Meets the Road: Does what you chose to do lead to tangible marketing actions to increase sales and profitability?
  19. MERCURY ADVISORY GROUP Copyright 2013. Mercury Advisory Group. All rights

    reserved. How to Prepare “Broadcasting to” vs “Targeting” the Market Identify Market Needs Benefits in terms of: • Features • Expense • Quality • Savings “Value Proposition” Segment Markets Segment and Target the market • Who? • What? • Why? • How? For Whom? Execute Marketing Plan Marketing Mix • Product • Price • Promotion • Destination Create Awareness
  20. MERCURY ADVISORY GROUP Copyright 2013. Mercury Advisory Group. All rights

    reserved. How to Prepare Create a Fam Tour Checklist: • What you want to know • From whom you want answers • Fam tour objectives • Medical Tourism Product Inspection • Fact-finding • Contract Execution • Don’t overlook all related suppliers • How much is your time worth? Fam tours are not free perks… They are fact-finding missions!
  21. MERCURY ADVISORY GROUP Copyright 2013. Mercury Advisory Group. All rights

    reserved. Thank You [email protected]