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Examining the prominence and congruence of organizational corporate social responsibility (CSR) communication in medical tourism provider websites

Alicia Mason (Communication, Pittsburg State University, Pittsburg, Kansas, USA)
Elizabeth Spencer (Communication, University of Kentucky, Lexington, Kentucky, USA)
Kaitlin Barnett (Communication, Pittsburg State University, Pittsburg, Kansas, USA)
Jaquelyn Bouchie (Communication, Pittsburg State University, Pittsburg, Kansas, USA)

Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Insights

ISSN: 2514-9792

Article publication date: 8 October 2021

Issue publication date: 20 January 2023

477

Abstract

Purpose

This study examines the prominence and congruence or “fit” between corporate social responsibility (CSR) activities and medical tourism providers (MTPs). In doing so, this study seeks to understand the forms of CSR commonly used in the marketing of health-care services by international MTPs.

Design/methodology/approach

Exploratory quantitative content analysis methods are used to examine CSR communication provided by MTPs. Descriptive statistics and analyses of variance are used to analyze the data.

Findings

Results show that 22% of MTP websites provided CSR information. There was a high degree of congruence or “fit” between the MTPs and the CSR. Furthermore, each MTP averaged between three and six CSR engagements demonstrating a commitment to not only the practice of CSR but also the stakeholders and communities who benefit.

Research limitations/implications

This analysis focused on organizational websites and did not examine CSR communications delivered through alternative media channels (e.g. digital platforms, promotional brochures, print advertising, etc.).

Practical implications

This study adds to the CSR framework in the medical tourism context by discovering what forms of CSR are commonly used in the marketing and promotion of international health services and further analyzes the strategic communication techniques used to deliver these messages.

Social implications

CSR is argued to have direct impacts on employee satisfaction, investor relations and consumer behavior; therefore, current findings may contribute to the development of measurement tools for empirical studies that test relationships between the persuasiveness of CSR messages on the attitudes of medical tourists.

Originality/value

Research inquiries into the CSR strategic communication practices help to identify strengths and opportunities, while informing reputation management and relationship-building practices.

Keywords

Citation

Mason, A., Spencer, E., Barnett, K. and Bouchie, J. (2023), "Examining the prominence and congruence of organizational corporate social responsibility (CSR) communication in medical tourism provider websites", Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Insights, Vol. 6 No. 1, pp. 1-17. https://doi.org/10.1108/JHTI-06-2021-0136

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2021, Emerald Publishing Limited

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