We live in a dramatically transforming world with huge implications for health, medicine  and the role of the regulators.While, there are many benefits of globalization, there can be no doubt that with the increasing interconnectedness of the world, comes new vulnerabilities to a range of serious health threats

Patients travelling across borders in pursuit of medical care are an evolving global trend in healthcare that has surged in recent years. Recent legislative changes which
clarify Medical Practitioners and Dentist Referral of Patients abroad are likely to have important impacts on national policies.

The number of people crossing Kenyan borders has increased exponentially over the past
two decades, and patient mobility is high on the agenda at national level. The movement of patients has provoked calls for better coordination of health systems and policies across
the country.

The Medical Practitioners and Dentist Referral of Patients Abroad rules regulate the referral of patients abroad by setting out parameters in which practitioners may offer a patient
requirement for the said referral and facilities, where the patients can be referred. Such guidelines are needed to ensure that patients’ health and
 safety is prioritized, that adequate health-system responses are in place, and that risks to patients and others are minimized.
At face value, medical tourism presents as a positive avenue for sufficiently wealthy consumers to obtain health care without being limited by what is available to them
locally. However, medical tourism cannot be judged without considering ethics, safety, costs to the community and continuity of care.

Lack of sustainability of having patients taking health care abroad is not healthy for
the local economy as cash to build our own local health systems is being diverted abroad. Thus weakening our own local capacity to manage and treat patients locally.

The move by the Ministry of Health is creditable since the medical tourism, phenomenon, can lead to healthcare delivery ch all enges including pharmaceutical risks for patients


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