March 25, 2011

¡Salud! (with an update from our querido Dr. de la Concha)

Recently some blogs that I follow have been commenting about healthcare in Mexico.   On the three posts I've read I have mainly seen positive comments by Americans who have received treatment without so much hassle.  Then after one post, there was an anonymous commenter who started spreading around his or her first world / third world crap and now I have to write about it because it made me mad.

 The post basically mentioned how easy it was to have blood work done and how it is ready within a day and how convenient it is to make an appointment with a doctor, etc.  The commenter said this (verbatim): "We don't understand expats in Mexico frothing about the wonderful health care. Your "doctor" couldn't qualify for a PA license in the states. Pharmacies in Mexico now station a credentialed "MD" at a welk-up to prescribe medication. Doesn't take much thought to figure out how that's profitable for the pharmacy...If all you want is blood and pee analysis that's available like one hour photo processing most anywhere in the world. Thank your stars you have the where withall and proximity to properly trained and equiped diagnosticians in the first world should God forbid you become seriously ill. In Mexico you'll probably be too far gone before you find answers!"  
I of course couldn't leave it alone and commented on all my great experience with public and private healthcare in Mexico.  The person came back by saying that even though our pediatrician says he worked in Chicago there are other doctors who lie about having fellowships in the U.S. so it is implied our doc is lying too.  Our pediatrician did work in Chicago and would probably be offended at being called a liar.  Maybe I'll let him write his own post.  The person also said that the reason healthcare is expensive in the U.S. is because no one is turned away.  Well I happen to think that healthcare is expensive because of insurance providers adding their percentage onto EVERYTHING.   How is it that I can get a blood test here for 100 dollars and in the U.S. it costs over 500?    The whole health care issue makes my blood boil because I believe it should be free for everyone and not cause the stress that it does for people in the U.S. who all of a sudden become ill and go bankrupt trying to get well.

Please feel free to share your experiences.  I know it is an imperfect system, Mexico's healthcare, but at least it exists.  And as far as private doctors are concerned, I am convinced that they are very well qualified and am  so thankful for ours.


So this is what our pediatrician had to say to the anonymous commentator...via facebook with his permission:

Once, being a physician from Illinois, I went with my child to a pharmacy in Las Vegas with an earache secondary to otitis media. I asked him to give me an antibiotic for the infection. The pharmacist said that my licence was good in Illinois but not in Nevada, and told me that I had to see a "DR" in Las Vegas. Knowing the "perfect conditions of the USA" I went to a public phone, called the pharmacist and pescribed over the phone the antibiotic for my child. Ten minutes later I went to the pharmacy and picked up the drug and told the pharmacist that He believed me over the phone but not personally. He said that I could not do that. I said: I just did it.

I am American and the quality of life in Puebla is much better in México than in the USA. I do not owe anything, thank god!!!!!!   I am a Board certified pediatrician, granted for life in USA and I prefer the warm, personal care in México. Sorry gringo country men.


  1. That's awesome, Karen!

    If the anonymous commentator responds again, I think I may just have to send him/her this further response!

    People like that (the commentator) tend to get me down, but you have picked me up bigtime!

    I do love snappy (and well thought-out) responses. Ahhh . . .

  2. Hi Jill! I was worried that you might not like a whole blown out debate on your comment page so I had to write here. I'm glad it picked you up :)

  3. Heh, that pretty much says it all: "Being sick in Mexico stinks"

    Rotten doctors, rotten medicine. You could die from a minor infection because of the incompetence.

    Pity American children at the hands of Mexican quacks.

    Charlotte Henderson-Villareal
    San Antonio and San Miguel Allende

  4. From One Country to Another
    Doctors Visits

  5. I will stand by our doctor. That doesn't mean they are all great. I'm sorry for people that have had bad experiences and I'm thankful for my great ones.