Medical tourism in emerging markets: The role of trust, networks, and word-of-mouth

Health Mark Q. 2019 Jul-Sep;36(3):203-219. doi: 10.1080/07359683.2019.1618008. Epub 2019 Jun 18.


ABTRACT Despite the growing popularity of medical tourism (MT) in emerging markets (EMs), little is known about how healthcare providers operationalize. This article analyzes how healthcare providers meet different challenges to market MT in an EM setting. A qualitative method was used for data collection and conducting case studies on healthcare services in the Philippines. The results show that trust and network building are necessary for mitigating the unfavorable characteristics, instability and lack of legitimacy caused by institutional constraints in EM. Word-of-mouth is found to be important to attract new customers and disseminate information about MT services.

Keywords: Emerging markets; Healthcare; Medical tourism; Network; Trust.

MeSH terms

  • Delivery of Health Care / standards
  • Humans
  • Marketing*
  • Medical Tourism / economics*
  • Medical Tourism / standards
  • Organizational Case Studies
  • Philippines
  • Social Networking*
  • Trust*