Dental Tourism: A Case Study in Los Algodones, Mexico with Dr. Krystyna Adams
Dr. Krystyna Adams is a member of the SFU Medical Tourism Research Group. She is a doctoral student whose PhD research will explore qualitative methods to examine the influences of the global trade in health services on health policy and planning at the national, regional, and global level. Dr. Adams’ case study research evaluated medical tourism in the small town of Los Algodones, Mexico, located along on the border of California.
In this Oasis conversation, Dr. John O’Keefe speaks with Dr. Adams about her study of dental tourism in this area; and the impact and implications of dental tourism for Canadians and Canadian dentists.
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CDA Oasis Team
- Crossing the border for dental care: Final Report (PDF)
- The Perfect Storm: What’s Pushing Canadians Abroad for Dental Care?
- Dental tourism industry exploits workers in Mexico
In this conversation, Dr. Adams speaks about her work including:
- Her time spent in Los Algodones to study dental tourism and its impact on patients, the local population, and the local economy.
- Treatments provided by approximately 500 dentists in Los Algodones and the competition and promotion of dental clinics in the area.
- Key findings of the study including treatment practices, outcomes, and patients’ expectations.
- Growth in dental tourism along the northern Mexico border and in the number of the Canadians and Americans accessing care.
- Disparities in patient expectations of care and services and the actual services provided.
- Concerns and issues regarding standards of care and best dental practices.
- Logistics of accessing care through a patient facilitation company or broker located in Canada and US and their impact on standards of care.
- Patient interviews and experiences specifically, making the decision to access dental care outside their home country and ‘shopping’ for dental care in Los Algodones.
- The broader health policy implication of this study.
- Lessons to be learned about safety, ethics, and the information that is available about dental tourism.
- A look ahead at the future of dental tourism.
Access the paper: