Private Surgery Success

Private Surgery Success

There are numerous reasons to travel outside one’s local area to receive medical treatment.  A procedure may not be available where you live, the wait for it is too long, or the price is too high. In dealing with COVID for the past 18 months, wait times have gotten far worse.  People are becoming desperate to be treated for non-urgent surgeries and/or diagnostic tests.  Many non-urgent surgeries should be considered urgent, especially if it impacts your livelihood.  Unfortunately that is not the case.  

If you find yourself in this position and decide to pursue private options, consider some of the following tips to make sure you have a successful outcome.

Communicate and be transparent with your local medical professional – family physician or specialist

First and foremost, we cannot emphasize the importance of communicating with your family doctor and/or specialist.  It matters tremendously at all stages of your medical journey, but especially before and after. Before the travel, give your doctor an opportunity to voice all of his/her concerns with your plans.  It will help you mitigate the risks associated with receiving medical care abroad. Remember, only your doctor will have the medical facts and necessary expertise to raise such concerns. You can ask for a second (or third) opinion, or do your own research, but it all starts with you and your doctor.

It also ends here. When you come back from your procedure, your doctor will not be surprised and unprepared to learn about your journey and if necessary, provide or advise post op care. In many, if not all surgeries, the recovery time and post op care are so important, that the success of the procedure largely depends on it and therefore, you need the medical support when you come back home.  Talk to your family doctor 4-6 weeks or earlier before you go.

Do not make your provider selection based on the price only

The old saying ‘you get what you pay for’ completely applies here.  There are many exceptional doctors out there.  Pricing can vary from country to country and many may offer you low ball pricing.  Why would you pay $28,000 for a hip replacement in Canada or the US when you could get it for $7,000 in India?  Buyer beware if this is in a country outside the US and Canada.  Not all countries and/or hospitals outside Canada and the US have to meet  certain safety standards to practice.  This is monitored in Canada and the US. If you choose a country outside of these countries, make sure you have done your due diligence.  If the hospital is not a JCI accredited facility, your safety and ultimate outcome could be greatly compromised.  Also check your surgeons background to make sure they are an appropriate surgeon for what you need to have done.  It is not unusual to have a dentist perform plastic surgery for say, breast implants.  You want to have a surgeon that is licensed and trained in the specific area you are having surgery on.  This is not monitored and is allowed in other countries.

Have a plan B and be flexible

Have you thought about the fact that there is a chance after an on site physical examination, your doctor may advise a different treatment plan? There are cases of “change of treatment plans”. For example, a prior GYN client of ours was told she needed to have a specific surgery to address pain.  After reviewing her records, the surgeon in the US felt like her pain was being caused by a whole other issue.  They made an informed decision to take this surgeon’s recommendation.  Turns out, this surgeon made the right call and she had a very successful surgery and outcome.  

To prepare yourself, don’t be afraid to ask questions before you decide go.  Work with your doctor on plan B before you leave.  The more planning you do the less stressful your medical journey will be.

Also be prepared for changes to the requirements each state and province has regarding COVID rules and practices.  This has changed almost daily in the past 18 months.  Keep yourself informed and up to date so you are not blind sided by a requirement that has changed during your trip.

If you have any questions or concerns or would like to discuss any of the medical travel issues further, please reach out to us – we are here to listen and give you the best answer today! Health Vantis specializes in making your medical travel more enjoyable by giving you our most personal support and care along the way – start to finish.

Health Vantis


Where To Go For Medical Travel?

Where To Go For Medical Travel

Traveling for medical reasons is becoming more and more common and accepted in North America. People go outside their local area to get medical help faster and for less. Although reports don’t analyze where medical travelers go, there is a chance the majority of them end up across the border, at the US clinics and hospitals. Why so?  There are a number of reasons to travel to the US for treatment.

Physical proximity

For some Canadian provinces, the US is only a drive away, and many clinics along the Northern US border have been catering to Canadians for years trying to get faster diagnostics or specialist help. Many destinations  are a short flight away and medical expertise is available almost immediately.

Proximity to medical facilities is not only a matter of convenience, but does have things to also consider. Increased risk of DVT is a hazard for anyone flying or driving over 4 hours. It affects people who recently had surgery and are returning home as well. With medical tourism on the rise, India and China are becoming top destinations for medical travelers; however, those are incredibly long flights for a Canadian, not to mention the COVID restrictions. Center for Disease Control and Prevention in the USA warns American citizens of a possible association between travel of over 4 hours and increased risk of DVTs. The risk is caused mainly by prolonged limited mobility and is applicable to long travel by car or bus.

No language barrier and few cultural differences

Communicating with your doctor and nurse in the same language is essential. Although medical staff in other countries speak English, there are still existing cultural differences in place that may affect the overall patient experience. USA and Canada seem to have enjoyed years of being peaceful neighbors and share similar values. Although the cultural differences do exist, they are not major.

Upon discharge, it is wise to have all your medical records in the language of your home country. Since there are no language issues between the two countries, those are easily compiled and passed on. In addition, the patient’s primary physician is a phone call away, should anything need to be discussed in follow up care, or if a primary care physician needs more information from a doctor who performed the procedure.

Faster access to medical advances

Medical discoveries and advances no doubt happen in many countries. Canada has kept up with most of them and is able to offer the most up to date treatments.  There are, however, some things unavailable due to untrained doctors and/or funding issues.  On a rare occasion, you might need to travel to the US for a more specialized treatment.

Nearly identical medical standards

Graduates of Canadian medical schools are not considered “foreign medical graduates” and their residency training in Canada is considered equivalent to residency training in the US.  Generally, if a Canadian physician has a provincial license, she can obtain a US license in the state she intends to work. The same applies to the US trained doctors in Canada – they are not considered an international medical graduate. This implies that general standards in training and knowledge are very much the same in both countries. This is very comforting to all Canadians choosing the US for their medical treatment – they will get the same quality if they were at home, but without the wait.

Receiving medical care in countries other than the US and Canada can have its implications. The government of Canada warns its citizens that:

  • Some countries’ medical services may not test blood for blood-borne infections like HIV or hepatitis B. There can also be a risk of acquiring malaria from local blood banks in areas where malaria is present. 
  • Be aware that there are multi-drug resistant bacteria in hospitals and other health care facilities around the world.
  • Little, if any information regarding the surgeons’ credentials may be lacking in other countries.  Due diligence for a surgeon’s experience and history is probably one of the most important steps in deciding who does your surgery.  You do not want a dentist performing a spine surgery.

Importance of follow up care

Follow up care is often not provided in many Caribbean countries of medical tourism. For example, physical therapy is essential in recovery for cardiac and orthopedic patients. This reason alone is enough not to go to a hospital that doesn’t provide it. Health Vantis works with hospitals and facilities in the US that will start physical therapy right after surgery and will continue twice a day until the patient is discharged. Health Vantis also makes sure our clients have physical therapy arranged at home prior to them getting home.

Clear legal recourse

Although this part is something that we want to avoid at all costs, malpractice happens in all counties. The legal recourse is, however, very hard to obtain in many counties. In the US all doctors carry malpractice insurance. The legal recourse is defined in a clear way and is available in case something goes wrong.  In other countries, there can be jurisdiction issues.

Canadians are wary of the high cost of medical services in the US and are holding back because it is simply too expensive. Health Vantis works with facilities that are affordable and adhere to high standards not only in positive outcomes but patient experience. The pricing Health Vantis offers is comparable, if not better, to the pricing in the Caribbean Islands or other exotic destinations. If you are interested in finding out more about a certain procedure and its cost, please contact Health Vantis today at toll free 1-877-344-3544 or by email

Health Vantis


What is Health Vantis?

What is Health Vantis?

We get calls and emails on a daily basis asking if we are a medical facility.  WE ARE NOT!  We are a medical facilitation company.   We can assist you in finding a private facility within Canada or the US to do your surgery and/or diagnostic test.  Health Vantis does not employ medical professionals and cannot provide any kind of medical advice.  In fact, we are a 2 person, women run, small business based out of Halifax, NS.  Our business was created due to the frustration we both experienced within the Canadian health care system for ourselves and children.  

Our company focuses on helping individuals that are on a long wait list for diagnostic tests and/or surgery.  On occasion, we get calls for procedures not offered in Canada.  Most of the time we can assist you in finding a private facility, however, not always within Canada.  The private options in Canada are very limited.  Going for a private surgery will almost always involves travel.  

Traveling for medical care can get very cumbersome.  You will quickly find it takes hours of research, emails, phone calls and follow up.  There is a lot to consider and plan for.  Health Vantis helps you navigate all of this.  We have experience in working with a number of facilities that are used to treating medical travelers.  We know and understand what the requirements are and can assist you from start to finish so no detail is left out.  There are arrangements that need to be done that one might never even consider, such as a border crossing letter.

The entire process can be challenging and overwhelming, especially if you are already in a lot of pain from your ailment.  We manage your case so you don’t have to stress over the arrangements such as obtaining a price, coordinating medical record transfer, hospital paperwork, making flight, hotel and transportation arrangements, and making sure a follow up treatment plan is in place when you return home.  With COVID, there are also additional hoops you need to jump through.  We keep you up to date and well informed on what those requirements will be.  

Our pricing is transparent.  We charge a $100 non-refundable fee to have your medical records transferred and reviewed by a surgeon or to make arrangements for a diagnostic test.  If you move forward with a surgery, we charge 10% of the cost of the surgery to manage the remainder of your journey.  The $100 fee initially paid is applied to this cost.   We spend a great deal of time communicating with our facilities and making sure you are in the loop on everything for the entire process.  

Health Vantis does not receive money from the facilities to bring them patients.  In fact, that is illegal and, in our opinion, unethical.  We recommend facilities that we think would be in your best interest based on your need(s).  We never make you commit to proceeding with a surgery and do not charge you if you decide not to pursue it, other than the initial $100 deposit.

Medical travel can be done but there are a lot of things to consider and coordinate.  If you would like to know what your options are, please contact us and we’d be happy to listen to your needs and come up with a solution for you.  We can be contacted at or 877-344-3544.

Updated Border Crossing Restrictions

Updated Border Crossing Restrictions

On September 21,2021, the US decided to extend their non-essential travel restrictions between the US and Canada through October 21, 2021.  This includes fully vaccinated individuals.  The goal is to ease the restrictions to fully vaccinated individuals beginning November 2021.  These restrictions do not apply to people traveling for medical purposes.

Non-essential travel into Canada has been approved.  All travelers coming back into Canada must submit a negative PCR-COVID test taken within 72 hours of getting on a flight or crossing the border via car.  Rapid antigen tests will not be accepted.  If you are NOT fully vaccinated, you will need to quarantine for 14 days on your return flight/drive back into Canada and provide another negative PCR-COVID test 8 days after your return.  If you are fully vaccinated, you are exempt from quarantine and 8 day testing requirement.  You will need to upload a copy of your vaccination card through ArriveCAN within 72 hours before your travel along with your negative PCR-COVID test.

If you are considering medical travel, we can assist in making sure you understand and are aware of all current requirements.  Medical travel is considered essential travel and there would be no issues coming to the US should you travel there for treatment.

Health Vantis