A recent 60 Minutes segment took a look at medical tourism. The spanking-new hospitals in Thailand and India look like truly wonderful places to be sick. The technology is cutting-edge, the doctors American trained, and the nurses are cheap.
Many of the doctors interviewed by 60 Minutes worked in the United States before they returned to their home country. Ten years ago these same doctors would not have left the United States. These doctors are returning to their home countries precisely because they now have the opportunity to work in spanking-new hospitals with the latest technology. The outsourcing story is thus more complex than it at first appears. Ten years ago the foreign radiologists we now use to read X-rays might not have been foreign at all – they would have been living and working in the United States. The world is flattening.