Photographic Adventures in Paradise
I stopped by Paco’s school for a few minutes this morning and snapped a few pix of some current projects his students are working on.
Paco’s contact info is as follows: San Lorenzo School of Art Cancun, Mexico……..email= firstname.lastname@example.org……….. phone: +52 (998)200 7120
Hola to my readers. This is something different as there might not be many photo’s. I thought that those who might be considering moving to Mexico would find it interesting on how some of the medical aspects of living in paradise work.
I’m including the cost in USD of each step. I should also mention that residents of Cancun pay about 1/4th what a tourist would be charged.
I have a hernia on my abdomen. It is next to my belly button. I’ve had it for about 2 years but lately it has enlarged it’s so time for a surgical fix. Surgery here is much different than in the US. Here is how it works.
1. An office visit to my surgeon (this is a young talented Mexican doctor that performed my gall bladder surgery 2 years ago) to discuss my options and seriousness of my condition. His name is Dr. Juan Francisco Valdez Hashimoto. Office visit $33.00
2. Several days later we call Dr. Hashimoto and tell him I wish to proceed as soon as possible.
2. Dr. Hashimoto emails us a list of requirements for us to chase down and provide to him ASAP.
3. We go to a local Xray clinic and have a thorax xray taken. Which we receive in 1 hour to take with. $22.00
4. We go down the block to the laboratory and have my blood drawn and a urine sample analyzed. Results come in 4 hours,
and are emailed to my doctor and also hard copies are taken with. $63.00
5. We go to our cardiologist for an EKG and take it with us along with a letter stating her findings and clearing me for surgery. $102.00
6. Office visit to give Dr. Hashimoto the xray, urine, blood workup results, and the EKG. Then we discussed when and where to have the surgery. We elected to use a clinic rather than a full blown hospital because the cost would be about half. Doctor Hashimoto calls the clinic and reserves a time slot at the clinic. The visit was included in Doctor Hashimoto’s surgical fee…….$1213.00
7. We go to the medical supply store and purchase the surgical mesh that will be inserted under my abdominal muscles. We are to give this to the surgical team prior to the surgery. $66.32
7.We are given an admittance letter to present at the clinic at 6am Monday Feb. 1st. Surgery should commence around 7am.
At this point we hit a glitch at the hospital. We checked in, filled out the paperwork and I was admitted. I was given a really nice private room with an futon for my wife to rest on. In Mexico it is normal for a family member to stay in your room while you are there to help with your recovery process and to keep you company. They asked me to change into one of those hospital gowns that we all love, you know the ones where is bare ass is hanging out in the wind. Anyway, once comfortably in my bed a nurse came to my side and inserted an IV into my left hand. Meanwhile another nurse took my blood pressure on my right arm. She asked my wife if I had high blood pressure and my wife told her yes but I was being treated for it. Then the anesthesiologist came in and expressed concern about my B/P. After he left the room my surgeon Juan Hashimoto came to talk with us. Together we decided to abort the surgery because of concerns of a stroke or other problems due to the issue with my blood pressure. Now the plan is to try again after I get my pressure under control. So the IV was removed and we checked out. The bill for this short stay was: $79.56.
There was no charge from our doctor. We pay for all these type of medical issues out of pocket because they are so affordable.The grand total so far: $365.88 ( I backed our our Dr.s fee as his work has not been performed at this time).
We do have catastrophic/evacuation insurance through a British company called BUPA and we are enrolled in the Mexican Social medical system. We could have elected to have this done thru them and the cost would have been $0. Stay tuned and when I proceed I’ll bring this article up to date with the complete costs.
Please let me know if you liked this kind of article then I will know if I should do more of these in-depth ones about living in Mexico.
Have you ever thought about what would happen if you had an automobile accident in Mexico, Cancun in particular? The process is very different that in the United States. This is not a necessarily bad thing, it’s just different for a number of reasons. The procedure is designed to assure that all parties reach a fair and equitable settlement. Blame must be admitted by one of the participants. Until that step is reached everyone stays at the Transito Police station until agreements are settled. Often times vehicles are not insured here which is I think the primary reason for the way an accident is processed here.
My wife had an accident recently in which she failed to yield the right-of-way to a motorcyclist. It was an accident, she just didn’t see him coming. The following is what happened.
An automobile accident in Cancun:
A few months ago I was a passenger in a car with a friend and she was in an accident with a taxi. I stayed with her to see how the system works and to lend moral support.
This however did not prepare me for the accident I had several months later. I knew the steps to follow but was too upset to follow them alone. Fortunately a nice young man stopped to help me with the phone calls and dealing with the police. I had left home without my phone!
The accident happened as I was driving home from Hospiten Hospital. The traffic was very busy and I had to wait for an opening to cross the highway. (Since my accident, traffic lights have been installed at that intersection.) When I saw an opening in the traffic, I crossed. Unfortunately I did not see the young man on the motorcycle and he crashed into my driver door. I parked the car and went to help him up from the pavement. Fortunately he seemed ok. The first step for me was to call my insurance company. In Mexico, they come to the scene of the accident and negotiate for you. Multiple police cars and two ambulances arrived but no insurance agent.
Mexican law states that if there is an injury or damage to public property the police must be involved. Minor accidents are handled by the parties involved and their insurance agents.
The young man was taken in an ambulance to the hospital to be evaluated, my car was flat bedded to the impound yard and I was detained and taken to the station in the police car. My insurance adjuster arrived at the station with the insurance company’s lawyer and negotiated for me.
Tom and four good friends came for moral support and help with translating. The insurance company agreed to pay the medical bill for the young man, the motorcycle repair and the repairs to our car if the repairs exceeded the deductible.
The insurance adjuster and the police officer went to the hospital to get a medical release from the young man. His injuries were minor and he signed it. If he had not signed, I would have been detained for at least 48 hours. I was not happy about that possibility. When the officer and the insurance adjuster returned with the medical release I paid a $3750 pesos fee and was released from custody. We were issued a impound release for the car and we went to pick it up the next day.
This process at Transito took about four hours.
The impound lot charged us a $3180 pesos towing and storage fee.
After payment we were free to go with our vehicle. We have since had the car repaired. They did a great job and the cost was less than our deductible.($4800 pesos and took 5 days.)
The entire experience was fair and Suzie was treated with kindness and respect by everyone involved which included the passerby that came to her assistance at the scene, the police officers, insurance adjuster, attorney and impound lady.
We owe a debt of gratitude to our dear friends Burt and Wendy who rushed to the scene of the accident and hung in their for hours until Suzie was released. Also our dear friends Noel and Rosalinda who came to the Transito station and helped with interpretation when we all got overwhelmed with the language communications. They also drove us to the impound yard twice and we are most appreciative of what they also did for us. Good friends are hard to find and these 4 are the best.
We also offer our sincere apologies to the young motorcyclist for this unfortunate experience.
(Note: All amounts are given in peso’s so to convert to dollars just divide the pesos by 16.58.)