Is treatment abroad right for you?

Before you book your treatment abroad, use this checklist to help you feel confident you're making the right decision.

Warning signs

Think carefully before booking any treatment abroad if there is:

  • a hard sell
  • a lack of information 
  • pressure to make a quick decision
  • no discussion of possible complications
  • no mention of aftercare 

Things to consider before seeking treatment abroad

Your reasons for seeking treatment abroad

Have you thought about your reasons for going abroad carefully? Make sure your decision is based on the quality of the medical care you would like to receive and not on how appealing the destination seems for a holiday.

Getting a second opinion in the UK

Have you spoken to your GP or dentist? There are several reasons why it's a good idea to involve your GP or dentist in your decision.

They can give you a valuable second opinion, as well as advice about treatment options and whether they think the treatment is needed.

As they could be involved in your aftercare, discuss how to transfer medical notes between the UK and the overseas team.

Researching your options for treatment abroad

Have you done your research? Have you checked the qualifications of the medical team treating you?

Have you been able to ask them questions about your treatment? Are you satisfied with the facilities and standards at the clinic or hospital where you will be treated?

Find out why treatment isn't available in the UK

If the treatment you're seeking abroad is not available in the UK, you may want to think about why it is not available here.

For reassurance, you may want to consider:

The effects of treatment

Do you understand the possible complications and side effects that could arise from your treatment?

Aftercare following treatment abroad

Are you clear about how your aftercare will be co-ordinated?

How will you finance your treatment abroad?

Have you done the maths? If your main reason for going abroad is to save money, make sure you've factored in fluctuating exchange rates, the possibility of extending your stay if necessary, and the cost of possible return trips.

Find out more about funding options for treatment abroad.

Insurance to cover you while abroad

Do you have appropriate travel insurance? Have you informed your insurer of your plans to have treatment abroad?

Trust in the treatment offered abroad

Do you trust the people you are dealing with?

Answers about treatment abroad

Have all your concerns and questions been answered? Read more about your entitlements and the rules about treatment abroad.

To find out more about the risks of going abroad for treatment and how to avoid them, see the risks of treatment abroad.

Page last reviewed: 07/12/2015

Next review due: 07/12/2017

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