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Mexico Medical Tourism: Things to Know
Medical tourism in Mexico, as well as in general, has exploded with popularity in recent years with more and more Americans discovering how much cheaper it is to have weight loss surgeries and other medical related procedures done in foreign countries. Of the top ten most known and considered “best” destinations for medical tourism are India and Mexico, both of which offer their own esteemed doctors and top-of-the-notch facilities. With the rise of medical tourism in Mexico, a vast increase in the construction of medical facilities has led to an even greater number of Americans crossing the border to go under the knife.
In America it is not uncommon for insurance companies to cover very little or none of the cost associated with weight loss surgeries. Other countries such as Mexico and India have recognized this problem in America, and have developed their countries to offer these services for cheaper prices to lure Americans tourists in. Some Americans are weary that the weight loss surgeries offered in foreign countries like India and Mexico are significantly cheaper because they believe the quality of care and the experience of the doctors is much less. This however is not the case. It is true that Americans can save up to 50 – 70% on weight loss related surgeries, but many times these doctors are much more experienced than those performing the same surgeries in America. Very frequently the doctors performing weight loss surgeries in foreign countries went to medical school in the U.S., which means they are familiar with American care, extremely experienced, and can speak English very well.
For most Americans the draw to Mexico is much greater because of the proximity, travel time, and the feeling of security of being close to home should an emergency arise. Major airlines have lowered the prices of flights to Mexico, San Diego, and cities in Mexico like Monterrey and Mexicali. This has helped many American families who are struggling financially with trying to afford weight loss surgeries, to be able to afford the travel to finally get the surgery that could possibly save their lives. Mexico’s best hospitals are in Mexico City, Guadalajara, and Monterrey, all of which are close to the American border and easy to get to by airplane, or by car from California. These hospitals and many clinics close to the border are used to catering to American medical tourism and are equipped to perform routine weight loss procedures such as vertical sleeve gastrectomy, gastric bypass, LAP-BAND, sleeve plication and plastic surgery.
For Americans who can afford little time away from their jobs, the waiting times for surgery in Mexico are virtually non-existent. Because of the rapid growth of medical clinics and hospitals, there are more than enough resources in Mexico to have a surgery done within a short window of time. The new hospitals and clinics recently built in Mexico have been designed to cater towards American medical tourism, meaning doctors agree to a large amount of “face time”, staff are equipped to deal with American tourists and their needs, and the medical technology is extremely up-to-date with staff having lots of experience in its use.
Mexico can offer accommodation packages which allow Americans post-surgery to be relocated to less urban areas and relax by the beach. The natural climate and beauty of the coastline is very conducive to helping recovery after weight loss related surgeries, as is the culture and friendliness of the natives. Additionally, very frequently prescription medications prescribed to be used after surgery can be found in Mexico for much cheaper prices than in the U.S., so extending stay to medicate for less and heal properly can be a smart decision and a better investment of money.
Frequently, while Americans are recovering from a medical surgery they will extend their stay in Mexico to have dental work performed as well. Mexico’s first medical tourism boom came from dental surgery and services because of their experienced professionals, quality care, and significantly cheaper prices. Dental care in Mexico can be a fraction of what it is in the U.S., so many Americans will chose to extend their stays or travel down for a quick weekend, saving themselves lots of money even with the travel expenses.
Mexico realizes that they are profiting from American tourism and know that they must offer exceptional care, experienced doctors, professional facilities, and state of the art technology to keep attracting the crowds. The benefits are all clear, and the prices can’t be beat. It appears that Mexico will soon be the destination for Americans to go to for any weight loss surgeries or dental care.