Come for the Beauty, Stay for the Healing

A bright niche for desert tourism, destination medicine promises an idyllic place to get well soon



The desert landscape offers a beautiful place to pursue a healthy lifestyle.

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Sunshine, perfect weather, impossibly blue skies, and incredible mountain backdrops sound like ingredients for a perfect vacation. And people recovering from surgery or rehabilitating from another treatment seek the same beauty and tranquility — which is why Greater Palm Springs has emerged as a prime destination to enhance health and well-being.

The area’s three major hospitals — Desert Regional Medical Center, Eisenhower Medical Center, and JFK Memorial Hospital — welcome patients from around the country and Canada who come for everything from cosmetic surgery to knee and hip replacements.

The desert is in the same groove as the Mayo Clinic, which announced plans earlier this year to open a “destination medical center” in Minnesota. Eisenhower Medical Center, for example, offers luxurious amenities at its 24-suite Greg and Stacey Renker Pavilion on its Rancho Mirage campus.

Medical tourism is also a boon to hotels, restaurants, spas, and attractions that host patients’ family members and friends.

This is hardly a new phenomenon. South American countries like Brazil and Argentina once experienced a tourism boom, particularly in the late 20th/early 21st century. It appeared that the balmy weather and popularity of Latin entertainers like Shakira and Enrique Iglesias renewed interest in the area. However, South America held a secret charm: It was a destination for elective medical procedures. “Destination medicine” became the chic and anonymous way to combine health maintenance and world travel.

Greater Palm Springs raises the bar with world-class doctors and medical facilities, as well as four-star amenities.

Palm Springs Medical Tourism

Experts advise to start with the basics — without trying to do too much too soon. Check with your doctor before beginning any exercise regimen, and be sure to get proper rest and nutrition. As you become able and proficient, challenge yourself to get to the next level. That motivation will fuel a healthy lifestyle.

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