Six in Ten Medical Tourists Travel Outside the U.S. for Dental Care, According to eHealth Survey

SANTA CLARA, CA (STL.News) The results of a survey released today by eHealth, Inc. (NASDAQ: EHTH) ( show that 21% of people enrolled in health insurance are willing to travel internationally for care, while 60% of those who have already done so received dental treatment.

“Dental insurance is often overlooked by consumers shopping for health coverage, but according to some estimates the cost of dental care has increased 90% since the year 2000,” said Seth Teich, eHealth’s Senior Vice President and General Manager for Individual and Family Plans.  “Our survey results shed light on Americans’ willingness to travel for affordable dental care, but they also illustrate the importance of getting the right dental insurance for your needs, and understanding how that coverage works.”

Highlights from eHealth’s survey:

  • 21% of respondents are willing to travel internationally for medical care, and 6% have already done so.
  • 60% of those who have traveled outside the United States for medical reasons received dental care or treatment, while 22% had a medically necessary surgery and 20% received vision care.
  • 74% of those willing to consider international travel for medical or dental care are enticed by the possibility of lower costs.

“Just like health insurance, there will often be out-of-pocket costs associated with extensive dental procedures,” Mr. Teich continued.  “But when consumers take advantage of the preventive services (such as routine cleanings) that their dental insurance covers, they can help maintain their dental health and potentially avoid thousands of dollars per year in costly treatments.”

eHealth’s findings were compiled from voluntary surveys of consumers who purchased Medicare plans or individual and family plans compliant with the Affordable Care Act (ACA) through eHealth. Respondents did not necessarily have dental coverage.  Surveys were conducted in October 2019 and a total of 1,860 responses were received.

NOTE: this is NOT the complete survey.