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The article, "In the Words of the Medical Tourist: An Analysis of Internet Narratives by Health Travelers to Turkey," provides an understanding of medical tourism through the words of actual health travelers.
Industry experts from the healthcare industry, the Governor’s Office of Economic Development, Las Vegas Global Economic Alliance, Las Vegas Convention & Visitors Authority, Las Vegas HEALS and UNLV have been working together to develop a regional strategic plan for the Las Vegas market to become a dominant player for both domestic and international medical travel. As Las Vegas positions itself to become the most globally recognized destination for medical and wellness travel, experts such as Rafferty and the research they conduct will be highly beneficial to this growth. Rafferty’s methodology provides insight into common themes of health travelers and may be applied to study other patient experiences as well. This research expands the body of knowledge in medical tourism and serves as a platform for further qualitative and quantitative research on health travelers’ experiences.
“It is not just international patients who are sharing their thoughts and impressions online. As patients leverage social media to provide feedback, it is vital that healthcare organizations have a solid plan in place to capture and respond to this real-time source of patient experience data,” says Rafferty. “At Dignity Health - St. Rose Dominican, we are using my research’s methodology to analyze our online patient experience data to identify key themes, recognize our staff for their performance and create actionable solutions to issues identified by our patients. While we conduct formal patient satisfaction surveys, this data has a lag time of several months. Using this methodology, we are able to share our online data with our staff and physicians almost instantly, which provides them with an additional point of feedback and great opportunities for performance recognition.”
Rafferty brings over 25 years of progressive healthcare experience to St. Rose and has held senior leadership roles in both healthcare and education. A registered nurse, Rafferty holds a Doctorate of Health Administration from Central Michigan University, a M.B.A. from the University of Chicago and a Master of Health Administration from Governors State University. She is a member of multiple professional organizations including the American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE), the Healthcare Financial Management Association (HFMA), The American Organization of Nursing Executives (AONE), and The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM). Rafferty will be presenting her research at the 6th International Nursing Management Conference to be held in Bodrum, Turkey later this year.