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Medical tourism is a profitable source of income for the NHS, study finds

BMJ 2013; 347 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.f6456 (Published 25 October 2013) Cite this as: BMJ 2013;347:f6456
  1. Jacqui Wise
  1. 1London

Private foreign patients are a lucrative source of income for the NHS, a new study has found.1 And medical tourism could be a growth area for NHS trusts now that the cap on income generated from private patients has been removed and trusts can earn up to 49% of their income from private work.

The study published in the open access journal PLoS One also found that despite media reports to the contrary, the United Kingdom is now a net exporter of medical tourists. In 2010 an estimated 63 000 UK residents travelled …

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