Medical Tourism in Mexico
For so many of Americans who have no health insurance, or are under-insured, it makes sense to choose Mexico for affordable, high-quality medical care. This is especially true for procedures that are “elective” and may not be covered by your medical insurance.
According to the World Health Organization, the Mexican healthcare system is ranked 61st in the world (as opposed to the ranking of 37 for the United States). Mexico’s best hospitals and clinics are based in Mexico City, Guadalajara and Monterrey. Many private clinics that cater to Americans are located across the US border, in cities like Tijuana, Mexicali and Laredo.
The most common treatments are for cosmetic surgery, dentistry, aesthetic procedures (Botox), hip and knee replacement, bariatric surgery and eye surgery. Lap Band Bariatric surgery was actually invented in Mexico by Dr. Arturo Rodriguez in 1981. It is not uncommon to save between 50% and 75% of the cost for this procedure, when compared to those performed in the states.
Doctors, dentists and surgeons in Mexico are reputable, qualified, and first-rate physicians. They are licensed and many have been trained in the United States. Medical care in Mexico is reliable and Mexican doctors and dentists offer a closer relationship with the patients by taking time to talk to patients and offer the warmth of Mexico to their patients. While a medical vacation is not generally a fun trip, it can be less stressful in Mexico. Many patients that had treatment in Mexico report that they were treated with warmth, respect and a smile. They received close personal attention, and felt that people went out of their way for the patient. They reported that the care givers were very efficient, there never seemed to be a feeling of being rushed. Doctors will spend a lot of time one-to-one with you, and will explain your procedure and answer any questions you may have.
Medical care in Mexico is safe and more personal than medical care in the United States and is less expensive than medical care in the United States. Mexican pharmacies are 50% to 70% less expensive (for most drugs) than pharmacies in the United States. Medicines in Mexico are manufactured by well-known international companies like Pfizer, Roche, Abbott Labs, Bristol-Myers Squibb etc. Medicine from pharmacies in Mexico is as safe as medicine from U.S. drug stores.
Because of the potential savings, you can reasonably combine your procedure with a weekend at the spa or on the beach. Mexico’s locations for medical treatments can be combined with relaxing recoveries in spas, resorts, or hotels near beaches, tourist sites, and shopping.
Primary Reasons For Medical Tourism To Mexico
According to the World Health Organization, Mexican hospitals are similar in quality and care to those in the United States. There are medical packages which offer accommodation and aftercare away from the urban areas and closer to the vibrant beaches. There is a high rate of fluency in both English and Spanish. Many insurers provide coverage for travelers; therefore out-of-pocket costs may be much lower than expected. Like most Latin American countries, Mexico has a friendly and family-oriented culture. Waiting times in Mexico are not a problem and are generally non-existent. The wonderful climate is conducive to recovery. There are minimal cultural differences with the US after more than a decade of low trade barriers under the NAFTA.
Cautions When Visiting Mexico for Medical Reasons
There is a lack of standardized quality measurement and quality ranking systems, and there may be some difficulty in seeking legal remedy in the event of malpractice.
Cost savings, excellence in care, and recovery in the warmth and sunshine are excellent reasons to consider Mexico for your medical procedures.