Happy Holidays! Here’s Your Knee Replacement

Happy Holidays! Here’s Your Knee Replacement

The older my parents get – in fact the older any of my relatives get – the harder it is to find a holiday gift that they could really use. I usually end up getting them a gift certificate for a meal out, or some useless trinket that will sit on their coffee table collecting dust – which they then have to clean. I missed the opportunity two years ago to give my mother (and father) something that they could have really used and that they’d both be raving about to this day – a knee replacement surgery in New Zealand.

You heard me… a knee replacement surgery in New Zealand. See my mother had knee replacement surgery about two years ago and it gave her life back. She’s able to go on walks, travel, bounce my youngest daughter on her knees; things she couldn’t do two years ago. They had money set aside and could afford the surgery.

They were lucky. With the cost of orthopedic medical procedures climbing and wait times increasing, they would likely have been priced out of the surgery today.

This got me thinking. If I knew then what I know now; that health tourism can be a fantastic alternative to high priced surgery in the States; and that it can be safe, convenient and fun at the same time I’d have likely pulled the trigger. My parents have been to New Zealand before and raved about its beauty, the friendly people, the great food and sights. You see, New Zealand also just happens to be a growing mecca for orthopedic related surgeries that are affordable – we’re talking 40 percent less or more! And there’s financial assistance available through third party financing setup especially for just such trips.

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You’ll want to do your homework obviously. This won’t be a surprise gift to anyone nor should it be. Research the facilities and providers, check testimonials of other patients, and find out all you can about the surgeons. There are online health tourism sites that do a good job of detailing the process and procedures, and some of them have some decent surgery offers to help you make your decision easier. You’ll also want to make sure that you steer clear of destinations that may not be suitable for the elderly or less adventurous. You’ll certainly want them coming back rested, relaxed, healed and healthy!

Oh well… I guess this year I’ll just have to settle for my gift certificate fallback and some pictures of the kids.