Conceptualising Asian medical travel as medical migrations

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Medical travel involves mobility in the pursuit of biomedical treatments, interventions or care. Conceptualising medical travel within a framework of migration allows us to view the continuities of medical travel and how it articulates with other forms of global mobilities and migrations. Major medical hubs have developed in Asia and intra-regional medical travel to access quality medical services is becoming pervasive across the region. These movements trace similar paths to other migratory flows for trade, education and work, and carry cultural meanings and values associated with care for family and kin members. Asian medical migrations intersect with other forms of migration such as: the movements of expatriate workers, retirement migrants, diasporic returnees seeking medical care in familiar surroundings, as well as the movements of forced migrants and refugees, or those forced to travel due to failing health systems in their home countries. In addition, it articulates with movements of medical staff (and technologies) across the region.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationRoutledge Handbook of Asian Migrations
EditorsGracia Liu Farrar , Brenda S. A. Yeoh
Place of PublicationOxon UK
Number of pages14
ISBN (Electronic)9781315660493
ISBN (Print)9781138959859
Publication statusPublished - 2018


  • medical travel
  • migration
  • Asia-Pacific region

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