Around one million 200 thousand travelers from different parts of the world come to Mexico to undergo health treatments that cost twice as much in their countries of origin or are not covered by their insurance.
Susan, a US citizen residing in Colorado, needed gastric bypass surgery, medical treatment that her insurance company did not cover, so she had to travel to the CIMA hospital, located in Monterrey to be treated, because it was cheaper.
Like her, around one million 200 thousand travelers from different parts of the world come to Mexico to undergo health treatments that cost twice as much in their countries of origin or are not covered by their insurance.
For Mexico, the medical tourism industry represents an economic income of 23 billion dollars, a figure similar to the entrance of tourist currency registered during the last year.
Among the states with the greatest potential in the sector are Baja California Norte, Tamaulipas, Quintana Roo and the Riviera Maya .
Companies such as City Express Plus Hotels, Holiday Inn, Velas Vallarta , as well as Grupo Álamo Dental, Dentalia, Dentaris and San José Hospital of Tecnológico de Monterrey make efforts to attract patients who do not find in their countries of origin an option for treatments.
For this reason, Mexico is positioned as the second most important country for medical tourism in the world , just below Thailand, which receives 1.8 million travelers.
“The main consumer in the world of these services is the American population, which seeks savings in health spending through high-quality alternatives , but with a better price than those offered in their country,” explained Mónica Narro, deputy director of Hotel City Express.
According to information from the Deloitte consultancy, among the main reasons for travel of American patients to Mexico is the proximity of both countries, accessible air routes and medical companies endorsed as Médica Sur, which provides transport services to and from the airport as part of of assistance.
“In the United States they have a private health system, one of the most sophisticated and advanced in the world, but also the most expensive and with insufficient public health coverage for vulnerable groups, such as older adults,” explained Carlos Pantoja, Deloitte’s leading partner. in the construction industry, hotels.
Therefore, eight out of 10 travelers who come to the country with medical reasons come from the United States , according to data from the Medical Tourism Association (MTA, for its acronym in English).
In addition, about 70 percent of medical tourists who come from the American Union to ‘MEXICO‘ reside in three states: California, Texas and Arizona, border areas they see in Tijuana, Mazatlan, Chihuahua, Cabo San Lucas, Monterrey and Mexico City as priority destinations to address their suffering.
“The border states are the entities with the greatest uptake of this economic flow, however, states in the Mexican southeast are beginning to have a considerable increase ,” said Narro.
According to information from the Mexican Council of the Medical Tourism Industry (CMITM), the most recurrent medical services are heart disease, lung diseases, diabetes, organ and tissue transplants , as well as dental treatments, where Mexico is the first recipient of foreign patients for treatments of this type.
On average, treatments in Mexico are between 30 and 50 percent cheaper than in the United States , for example, the placement of a gastric sleeve costs 46 percent less in the country, about 8 thousand 900 dollars; while for a rhinoplasty the cost amounts to $ 3,800, well below the $ 6,500 that would cost a surgery of that type in a US hospital.
Tijuana, the most ‘healthy’
The border city of Tijuana, in Baja California, is the main entity that receives tourists for health purposes in the country.
According to data from the Ministry of Tourism, the previous year this destination received one million 700 thousand patients and companions -both national and international- who treated a condition in places such as the Cosmetic Dentistry Clinic.
“In 2018, it received 1.7 million patients and companions, most of them from the US, Canada and states such as Jalisco, Sinaloa, Sonora, Nuevo León and CDMX , with an economic income of 600 million dollars,” said the head of Sectur, Miguel. Torruco.
Durango creates a medical cluster
The entity seeks to attract medical tourism to its hospitals , clinics and rehabilitation centers, therefore, the local tourism ministry announced the creation of a medical cluster to search the US market for an opportunity to enter this market.
“We are interested in promoting medical tourism, so we announced the creation of this cluster for a scheme of promotion and attention for visitors, especially from the United States, to attend in Durango,” said Eleazar Gamboa, local tourism secretary.
Source: el financiero
The Mazatlan Post