Each year, some 300,000 international patients visit the United States seeking excellence in specialty care—especially in complex or "high-acuity" cases. US facilities and physicians are rarely able to beat the price at a JCI-accredited hospital in India, Turkey or Thailand; however, American specialists often are called upon to treat cases considered difficult or untreatable elsewhere.

While the US healthcare system remains largely wedded to general hospital model, clusters of specialty treatment can be found in vibrant regions, where academics, research and clinical care come together to form a powerful whole. For example, Houston’s Texas Medical Center (TMC) is comprised of 54 hospitals and specialty clinics, including luminaries such as MD Anderson (oncology); Methodist (orthopedics, transplants); Texas Children’s Hospital and its recently opened Women’s Pavilion.

Similarly, healthcare clusters in South Florida tend to attract the Latin American and Caribbean patient, while Boston and the greater New York region bring in affluent patients from all over, including Africa, the Middle East, Western Europe and—increasingly—Russia and China.

Most leading US international hospitals have been serving cross-border patients for decades, with established international patient services that include airport pick-up and drop-off, hotel shuttle, translators, travel planning and more. An Intercontinental Hotel adjoins Cleveland Clinic, and the Marriott Texas Medical Center welcomes visitors from all walks, with special amenities for the TMC patient.

2016-17 Best Hospitals Honor Roll (by U.S.News and World report)