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Abstract

The focus of our research is Customer Based Brand Equity (CBBE) in Indian medical tourism which has gained wider attention world-wide. To be able to operationalize CBBE (brand equity) for medical tourism scale development, we generated items for such a scale through content analysis. The research questions for this study were (a) What are the dimensions for a brand equity scale for medical tourism considering social, economic, and market influences? (b) How is culture along with an economic indicator such as infrastructure/superstructure relevant in the context of CBBE for medical tourism? and (c) To what extent does the content analysis of interviews based on questionnaires from literature reviews support the variable? The respondents were contacted from two large East Indian Hospitals with continuous visits by heterogeneous foreign patients. Content analysis was used to evaluate the responses using the framework for coding as given by Corbin and Strauss (2008). This paper explores the reasons as to why the patients from western countries and the Middle East prefer other destinations as compared to India for medical tourism. The medical tourism market is growing due to comparatively affluent middle class, better connectivity and wiser cost decisions by patients. The Indian medical tourism market has gained wider attention due to well trained and competent physicians, cost consideration, quality service, better international accessibility and popular use of English as the primary mode for spoken and written communication language. However, there is no general relevant Customer Based Brand Equity (CBBE) scale for medical tourism market till present day. We have identified six dimensions (three new) for a consolidated and unified CBBE scale for medical tourism. In the later part, we have done a content analysis of 90 patient interviews conducted in Eastern Indian hospitals. The interview questionnaire was developed from the literature review. Lastly, a content analysis is done using Nvivo software for logical validation of literature findings. The content findings and prior literature review enabled us to propose the dimensions of the CBBE scale for medical tourism. The new dimensions may be used for future CBBE research in medical tourism at the global level.

Keywords

Medical Tourism, Customer Based Brand Equity Scale, Culture, Infrastructure, Content Analysis, Qualitative Analysis

Author Bio(s)

Ms. Diya Guha Roy is currently a doctorate scholar in Vinod Gupta School of Management (Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur). She has prior experience of 8 years and worked in corporations such as Infosys and Oracle, and acquired a MBA from Washington University in St Louis (Full Scholarship). Correspondence regarding this article can be addressed directly to: diya.roy@gmail.com.

Sujoy Bhattacharya is a Ph.D. (IIITM Gwalior) and Associate Professor, Vinod Gupta School of Management. Bhattacharya joined the Institute in 2009. His research areas are Data Analytics, Option Pricing, and Quantitative Marketing. Correspondence regarding this article can also be addressed directly to: sujoybtc@vgsom.iitkgp.ernet.in.

Ms. Srabanti Mukherjee is a Ph.D. (IIEST, Shibpur), Assistant Professor, Vinod Gupta School of Management. Her research areas include the following broad domains: - Consumer Behavior - Marketing to the Bottom of the Pyramid - Service Quality Measurement - Tourism/ Medical tourism - Social Media Marketing - Quality in Health care and Higher Education. Correspondence regarding this article can also be addressed directly to: srabanti@vgsom.iitkgp.ernet.in.

Acknowledgements

I thank my guide (Sujoy Bhattacharya) and co guide (Srabanti Mukherjee) for their guidance and patience in my ongoing scholar days.

Publication Date

10-13-2018

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 4.0 License.

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