Department of Social Sciences
Background: It is imperative that researchers studying medical tourism connect their work with policy, so that its real-world challenges can be better understood, and more effectively addressed. This article gauges the scope and evolution of
Methods: A Boolean search of the Web of Science (WoS) Core Collection was performed to identify policy-related publications on medical tourism. We analyzed the results using bibliometrics and a data visualization software called
Results: Our findings suggest that only a small proportion of medical tourism research explicitly addresses policy issues or applies policy paradigms in their study approach. Field-specialized journals serving practitioners publish less research as compared to interdisciplinary social and health policy journals. Moreover, there are significant geographical and disciplinary disparities in the policy-orientation of research, and a predilection towards select policy areas such as reproductive and transplant tourism to the neglect of more holistic governance and health system considerations.
Conclusion: This article is a call to action for greater engagement by policy scholars on medical tourism, and for health researchers to more explicitly consider how their research might contribute to the understanding and resolution of contemporary policy challenges of medical tourism. Failure to clearly and consistently make the policy connection is a lost opportunity for researchers to frame the public debate, and influence policy thinking on medical tourism.
Glob Health Res Policy
Where is the policy? A bibliometric analysis of the state of policy research on medical tourism..
Glob Health Res Policy,
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