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Gathering Medical Tourism Information Through Algorithmic Text Analysis Of Tweets

William Claster, Nader Ghotbi, Subana Shanmuganathan

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Informed use of medical tourism services depends on an up-to-date knowledge of the available services, and their costs and risks at various potential destinations. Such information can also assist in the competitive development of healthcare services. Innovation, product development, and health user relationship management by medical service providers is enhanced, as is knowledge base construction and management. This chapter shows that new forms of social media can provide valuable and previously difficult to obtain real-time knowledge on medical tourists' perceptions, concerns, and sentiment towards medical tourism destinations - both those already visited by other users and those under consideration for a possible visit. We show how analysis of comments from such social media as Twitter micro-blogs can be used to reveal potential and recent medical tourism motivations in the medical services markets in various locations.