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The new EU Cross-border Healthcare Directive announced today intends to lift restrictions on patients traveling for treatment in other EU countries. Patients wishing to travel to other EU countries for medical treatment will be able to reclaim the cost of treatment from the NHS and will only have to pay their travel and accommodation costs, plus any top-up fees if charges in the foreign hospitals are higher than the NHS cost.

Treatment Abroad provides comprehensive access to information and advice about clinics, hospitals and specialists within the EU, and will enable prospective NHS patients to make informed decisions when choosing destinations, facilities and doctors for their treatment.

With over 70,000 visitors a month, www.treatmentabroad.com is already the most visited site on the web for self-paying medical tourists who are looking for information about cost effective surgery and medical treatment abroad. Treatment Abroad provides information covering the healthcare services available, doctor accreditation, treatment costs, travel and accommodation. There's also an extensive and free Guide to Medical Tourism to download, for those considering overseas treatment.

Keith Pollard of Treatment Abroad says; “This directive could revolutionise the way we experience healthcare in this country and throughout the rest of Europe. The directive will take the concept of patient choice to a new level and www.treatmentabroad.com will continue to provide the most up-to-date and relevant information that patients will need when choosing treatment options and destinations.”

“With the announcement of this new directive we are expecting a huge increase in traffic to the website not only from British patients but also from members of other EU countries looking for reliable, comprehensive and practical information about treatment options within EU member countries”, continues Pollard.

“Competition from European hospitals could prompt much needed changes within the NHS. Successive governments have made token gestures to introduce market forces within the NHS; ranked 17th out of 29 European countries in the recent Euro Health Consumer Index, the NHS now faces real competition in the marketplace.”

Treatment Abroad is currently working on a code of practice for medical tourism to encourage the development of best practices amongst medical tourism agencies and healthcare providers. The code is currently at final draft stage and will be completed in early 2008.

Last year more than 70,000 patients left the UK for treatment and patients who have become ‘medical tourists’ have been extremely positive about their experience and the quality of care they have received within the European Community and from the information and advice provided by www.treatmentabroad.com.

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For further information please contact: Caroline Ratner at Caroline Ratner Communications 020 8209 0120 or carolinecomms@gmail.com

Editors Notes:

To download a copy of Treatment Abroad’s Guide to Medical Tourism go to www.treatmentabroad.com/guide

www.treatmentabroad.com is the UK's leading guide to health and medical tourism, covering over 20 destinations worldwide and is managed by Intuition Communication Ltd. It is the first web site designed to meet the needs of an increasing number of people looking abroad for cost effective surgery and medical treatment abroad. The site provides clear advice on all types of treatment from dentistry and cosmetic surgery to knee and hip operations and fertility treatment.

Intuition Communication also manages:

www.privatehealthcare.co.uk/ which with over 250,000 visitors a month is one of the web’s most visited resources for patients researching all aspects of private healthcare services ranging from private hospital treatment to private medical insurance.

www.treatmentinhungary.com - a health tourism site with a specific focus on Hungary.

www.treatmentincyprus.com - a health tourism site with a specific focus on Cyprus

www.self-help.org.uk - a searchable database of over 1,000 self help organisations and support groups across the UK that provide support, guidance and advice to patients, carers and their relatives.

www.canceradvice.co.uk, a comprehensive resource for patients and their relatives seeking information about diagnosis and treatment of cancer.

Intuition Communication also provides consultancy on web strategy to the healthcare sector, and has experience in the NHS, the private healthcare sector, the pharmaceutical industry, and the medical products and services marketplace.

This press release was distributed by ResponseSource Press Release Wire on behalf of Caroline Ratner Communications in the following categories: Health, Travel, Medical & Pharmaceutical, Public Sector, Third Sector & Legal, for more information visit http://pressreleasewire.responsesource.com/about.