Medical Tourism Resource Guide

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Mexico Hospital Certification Standards

Since 1999, Mexico General Health Council has begun preparing a certification program, called the CSG Accreditation. Using international standards as its benchmark, the Mexico CSG Accreditation aims to attract would-be medical tourists from around the world. The General Health Council (GHC) accreditation program is a very attractive certification, but not the only Mexico program.

Not all hospitals in Mexico are certificated, it is voluntary – with many hospitals opting out. Which is why now, many hospitals are required to be certified by the Health Ministry.

In 2008, the National Certification System for Medical Care Organizations (Sistema Nacional de Certificacion de Establecimientos de Atencion Medica) was founded. Find out which hospitals are certified by the Health Ministry here:

Center of Excellence in Mexico

The Center of Excellence program of the Mexican Association of Surgery for Obesity and Metabolic Diseases (CMCOEM) is a smaller accreditation for hospitals in Mexico that engage in bariatrics.

The Center of Excellence program for the United States is much larger than the similar, and sister program for Mexico. Currently, there are only two hospitals or bariatric facilitates in Mexico which has this certification.

About the Center of Excellence in Mexico

Started in 2011, the CMCOEM center of excellence is a program that views a hospital’s criteria on patient care, diagnosis, nutritional management, and hospital standards.

There are 10 requirements for bariatric programs based in hospitals for COE accreditation:

  1. Institutional Commitment to Excellence
  2. Surgical Experience and Volumes
  3. Designated Medical Director
  4. Responsive Critical Care Support
  5. Appropriate Equipment and Instruments
  6. Surgeon Dedication and Qualified Call Coverage
  7. Clinical Pathways and Standardized Operating Procedures
  8. Bariatric Nurses, Physician Extenders and Program Coordinator
  9. Patient Support Groups
  10. Process for Long-Term Follow-Up, including BOLD

Because there are better-known hospital accreditation programs such as the JCI, Mexico CSG, a hospital not having this accreditation are not required to be one of the best hospitals in Mexico for bariatrics.

– Additional Reading: Surgical Review Corporation

Joint Commission on Accreditation of Health Care Organizations

The Joint Commission on Accreditation of Health Care Organizations otherwise known as the JCAHO, is the United States required accreditation agency for hospitals and centers that are to be paid by insurance or Medicare.

In 2009, Mexico was the first country to adopt U.S. Hospital standards for national hospital certification (Mexico’s own JCAHO standards). Now, all private hospitals in Mexico are required to obtain national certification. These new standards now require hospitals to operate with procedures and audit practices that have benchmarks similar to JCAHO.

To ensure the success of the program, the Mexican Hospital Association signed an agreement with GHC prohibiting Mexican health insurers to pay non-certified hospitals.

The enforcement looks to be successful, helping to secure the increase in Hospitals certified. According to GHC, as of February 2013, 85 percent of private hospitals and 14.7 percent of public hospitals were certified. The majority of hospitals were in large urban centers: Mexico City, the states of Mexico, Puebla, Jalisco, and Nuevo Leon.

Joint Commission International Accreditation

Joint Commission International (JCI) is the division of the JCAHO, a very prestigious accreditation agency that currently accredits seven private hospitals in Mexico. JCI accreditation will ensure that standards are equivalent to other prestigious hospitals in the world, and with most hospitals in the United States.

JCI is typically used for insurance companies to judge the merit and other criteria – as it has very little to do with health organizations or governments in Mexico. Hospitals will use JCI accreditation to attract medical tourists from the United States and Canada.

Mexico Medical Tourism

Mexico is the most popular destination for medical tourism for U.S. individuals. Today, thousands of individuals are descending on Mexico to seeking quality healthcare.

To be fully informed and educated, we recommend that patients seek out the hospital’s certification to see how exactly their hospitals compare. Also, take into account that not all hospitals try to obtain certification, so if a particular hospital lacks certification it may not suggest they lack rigorous standards. Factor in user reviews, cost, and reputation.

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