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I'll soon be moving to and living full time in Mexico so I've got to decide if I should cancel my Medicare part B, take the MXN16,000 per year savings and invest it in a local health plan in D.F.

I know quite a lot about the disadvantages of doing this from the Medicare side; penalty and limited "window" for rejoining after cancelling and so on, so I have enough information about that aspect. But I've heard that Mexican medicine is advanced and wonder if anybody can advise me on the latest information on health insurance options there.
 

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[QUOTE=geoffbob;1941938]I'll soon be moving to and living full time in Mexico so I've got to decide if I should cancel my Medicare part B, take the MXN16,000 per year savings and invest it in a local health plan in D.F.

I know quite a lot about the disadvantages of doing this from the Medicare side; penalty and limited "window" for rejoining after cancelling and so on, so I have enough information about that aspect. But I've heard that Mexican medicine is advanced and wonder if anybody can advise me on the latest information on health insurance options there.[/QUOTE]


Cancel that Medicare Part B option immediately. Take that savings which wouldn´t buy you a wooden nickle up there in the U.S. and self-insure or use that money to buy into a major medical health insurance plan in Mexico whereever you live or plan to live down here. The health care here in places such as Guadalajara, Mexico City, Monterrey and dozens of other places is far superior to that avalable in the U.S at a fraction of the cost. If you live in Mexico, money spent on Plan B has the value of that which disappears acompanying the sound of a commode flushing.

Doctors and their staffs down here may remember your name, actually ask you how you are doing and they often truly give a damn. Always remember to engage in social interourse before telling them about your ailments.
 

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This thread has been moved to the main Mexico forum since it does deal with living in Mexico.
 

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Is that what you did Hound Dog, cancel it and self insure?

Gracias señor
Well, geoffbob, when we moved here in 2001 at the respective ages of 54 and 59, we were not eligible for Medicare and immediately bought unlimited major medical insurance, at first through the Lake Chapala Society (LCS) sponsoring a group health insurance plan offered by New York Life/Seguros Monterrey which turned out to be a disaster and then, far more successfully, through an individual plan at AXA.

The LCS group New York Life/Seguros Monterrey plan was sold to us on the LCS grounds as non-cancellable and then the insurance company dishonorably cancelled within the first year of the plan. Do not trust the LCS when it comes to this critical part of your personal protection since they may not know what they are selling and will take no responsibility for any troubles you may experience later. The individual AXA health plan - in force for 12 years - has been absolutely first rate and we have had occasion to make serious claims against our covereage in distant Chiapas in remote hospitals with no trouble whatsoever.

Now, keep in mind that we bought this AXA unlimited major medical coverage covering major medical expenses anywhere in Mexico plus $50,000USD emergency coverage anywhere in the world, when I was 59 and my wife was 54. We are now 71 and 67 respectively. The policies are not cancelleble but, of course, our premiums rise annually. We paid our last premiums just this past April. The aggregate amount of the premium we paid then was around the equivalent of $500USD a month. That is for coverage including the best doctors and surgical teams and hospitals in Mexico for top notch private suites - not some dormitory in some God-forsaken HMO in California with attention from the next HMO two-bit physician on whom you never laid eyes before.

Of course, if private hospital care is beyond your means, Mexico also has IMSS medical care(socialism) available at something like the equivalent of $300USD a year or Seguridad Publico at hospitas for the poor for free.

The important thing to remember if you come here is to take care of the major medical insurance right away because the older you get the harder it is to come by.

In many years living in the United States, France and around the world, I have never encountered better hospitals or physicians than here and at a fraction of the costs in the corrupted United States..

Unles you actually have a home in the United States, get rid of that Plan B crap as soon as possible.
 

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Hound Dog,

As per your wise counsel I mailed off my Part B cancellation today. I must admit though, that my three years on B with an HMO in Miami (Leon Medical Center) were a good experience. Everything I needed and all costs were included in the plan including tests, flu shots, travel vaccinations, dental, eyeglasses, prescriptions, little sweeteners like free toothpaste, floss, Ibuprofen, all delivered to my door. Transportation was free to and fro if I so desired. It's simply red carpet service all the way and I'll miss it. I'm sorry that you had such bad and truly loathsome experiences. I'd be just as irate if not more so.
 

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Hound Dog,

As per your wise counsel I mailed off my Part B cancellation today. I must admit though, that my three years on B with an HMO in Miami (Leon Medical Center) were a good experience. Everything I needed and all costs were included in the plan including tests, flu shots, travel vaccinations, dental, eyeglasses, prescriptions, little sweeteners like free toothpaste, floss, Ibuprofen, all delivered to my door. Transportation was free to and fro if I so desired. It's simply red carpet service all the way and I'll miss it. I'm sorry that you had such bad and truly loathsome experiences. I'd be just as irate if not more so.


geoffbob:

Thank you for your kind words and I understand why you might wish to keep these free services as long as you live in the United States. It´s just that those services don´t make sense down here and never will unless they change the U.S. law which, at present, is not in the cards. I am on a variety of blood pressure medications and aspirin regimens and hydrochlorithiazide and potassium pills and diabetic medications and all of this other crap every day just to keep me alive and I often have to visit the doctor here at Lake Chapala who always seems surprised to find me still on earth except as a rotting zombie and I still have enough money left over for fine rum and an occasional spin in the country and flight to Paris so I must be doing something right so far. I miss the United States and its Medicare like I miss a cow fart in the wind.
 

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[/I]

geoffbob:

Thank you for your kind words and I understand why you might wish to keep these free services as long as you live in the United States. It´s just that those services don´t make sense down here and never will unless they change the U.S. law which, at present, is not in the cards. I am on a variety of blood pressure medications and aspirin regimens and hydrochlorithiazide and potassium pills and diabetic medications and all of this other crap every day just to keep me alive and I often have to visit the doctor here at Lake Chapala who always seems surprised to find me still on earth except as a rotting zombie and I still have enough money left over for fine rum and an occasional spin in the country and flight to Paris so I must be doing something right so far. I miss the United States and its Medicare like I miss a cow fart in the wind.
Hound Dog,

I truly appreciate your sarcasm and sense of humour. It adds zest to the forum. Keep it up -- but be wary of posting just after your final drink of fine rum!! :D:D
 

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Hound Dog

[/I]

geoffbob:

Thank you for your kind words and I understand why you might wish to keep these free services as long as you live in the United States. It´s just that those services don´t make sense down here and never will unless they change the U.S. law which, at present, is not in the cards. I am on a variety of blood pressure medications and aspirin regimens and hydrochlorithiazide and potassium pills and diabetic medications and all of this other crap every day just to keep me alive and I often have to visit the doctor here at Lake Chapala who always seems surprised to find me still on earth except as a rotting zombie and I still have enough money left over for fine rum and an occasional spin in the country and flight to Paris so I must be doing something right so far. I miss the United States and its Medicare like I miss a cow fart in the wind.
HAHAHAHAHA HOUND DOG YOU ARE SO FUNNY!!

May I ask how much do you spend a month on living expenses including HEALTH insurance? Maybe is a question that does not go here, but I 'll give it a try, maybe a private m?

I am asking because my family in Mexico, (Monterrey) want me to go and live there. I am in Florida right now. I have a lot of questions, hehe.

Thank you ,

I thank all of you for your friendship and for the reazon that unites all of us: USA.

Paz:D
 

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But I've heard that Mexican medicine is advanced ....
Compared to what's generally available in the USA, "health care" in Mexico is probably substandard by comparison. What you get, the quality you receive ... most oftentimes depends upon where you live. In the largest cities in the country there are excellent physicians and specialists and good hospitals. However, for the rest of the country .... I don't think the picture is as bright. For people with few or no chronic or serious illness, routine visits are simple to accomplish and cost relatively little in comparison to the USA. However, more serious/speciaist attention can be lacking and the facilities oftentimes lack the essentials and patients or their families are sometimes sent to pharmacies to buy supplies that hospitals and clinics lack. Government insurance programs and private insurance plans routinely exclude malities which were previously discovered and treated. So if you're coming to Mexico with health "issues" treatment may be costly.
 

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We have found the level of health care and the quality of the private hospitals in Guadalajara to be excellent; much better than anything that I have experienced in the USA. Unfortunately, I have had much too much experience as a patient in both countries.
Admittedly, Guadalajara is home to a large medical school, where both US and Mexican doctors study and graduate.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
We have found the level of health care and the quality of the private hospitals in Guadalajara to be excellent; much better than anything that I have experienced in the USA. Unfortunately, I have had much too much experience as a patient in both countries.
Admittedly, Guadalajara is home to a large medical school, where both US and Mexican doctors study and graduate.
Thanks ******. I posted this question almost a year ago and after heeding Hound Dog's advice to cancel my Part B I forgot all about this thread. When someone browsing Expat Forum spots an oldie and replies, the original question goes back to the top of the list (or so it seems) and here we are. I'm now living full time in SMA so it's good to know that the highly thought of medical care in GTO is very close by.
 

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pazenel said:
HAHAHAHAHA HOUND DOG YOU ARE SO FUNNY!! May I ask how much do you spend a month on living expenses including HEALTH insurance? Maybe is a question that does not go here, but I 'll give it a try, maybe a private m? I am asking because my family in Mexico, (Monterrey) want me to go and live there. I am in Florida right now. I have a lot of questions, hehe. Thank you , I thank all of you for your friendship and for the reazon that unites all of us: USA. Paz:D
You shouldn't have any problem finding very good healthcare in Monterrey. It is the second largest city in Mexico and, as it is fairly close to the US, several hospital chains have invested in their facilities to attract US citizens into their city to take advantage of the cheaper prices but high quality. Prices are lower than north of the border but can still be very expensive for major surgery, cancer treatment etc. So you might want to consider private medical insurance. There are several companies that provide quite comprehensive cover and prices depend on how old you are, where you live, preexisting conditions etc. good luck
 

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It is the second largest city in Mexico
I apologize for the nitpicking, but it is actually the third largest metropolitan area with 4.1 million people. The Guadalajara metropolitan area has 4.4 million. Counting just the cities themselves, it is Monterrey with 0.97 million and Gdl with 1.5 million. All numbers from Wikipedia.
 

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TundraGreen said:
I apologize for the nitpicking, but it is actually the third largest metropolitan area with 4.1 million people. The Guadalajara metropolitan area has 4.4 million. Counting just the cities themselves, it is Monterrey with 0.97 million and Gdl with 1.5 million. All numbers from Wikipedia.
Sorry
 

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Mexico is a country of contrasts. Yes the big cities have excellent private hospitals with caring Drs. But try to find good medical care in smaller centers. I would describe the IMSS clinics in smaller places as 3rd world or worse. That system is corrupt as well as bankrupt and it shows. Keep in mind that the private hospitals are not cheap. Inexpensive by US standards but getting more expensive every year.
 

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IMSS is not broke and not corrupt. It is a large network of clinics and hospitals, plus pensions for participants when retiring, and if a clinic in a small center cannot do it for a patient they send you to a center that can, free of charge.

IMSS, ISSSTE and Seguro Popular are good sources of socialized medical treatment in Mexico and are improving greatly with more people insured each year. IMSS had over 59 million enrolled and Seguro Popular has over 40 million enrolled.

There are a few threads here that have information on Mexico´s socialized medicine if anyone wants to do some research on the subject.
 

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None of the modern drugs are on the IMSS list. And even then they run out of the popular drugs early in the month. But for a small fee the pharmacist can find you what you need. The smaller clinics are like something from 1930. Dirty old equipment. Even rusty in the coastal areas. BUT some of the young Drs. are first class. They have to serve the IMSS clinics for a short period of time after they have interned. Nothing fancy in these small clinics. No x ray , no ultrasound, no EKG, long waits ( up to 4 hours). Like I said: corrupt and lack of funding ( like most public health systems). Even some of the General Hospitals are unlike anything in the USA or Canada. We use a private hospital and it is as good as anything in the USA. Dr's who attend conferences and learn the latest medical breakthroughs. Medical equipment that is the best. Hospital rooms that look like a Sheraton. Dr. visits are $40 and specialists are $60 to $70. Certainly more expensive than IMSS but worth the money. Government workers do not use the IMSS system. They have a service called ISSTE. They have their own Drs. clinics and hospitals. A much better system. Military personnel are fortunate to also have a separate system. I am not familiar with the quality of care but have been told it is very good. No IMSS hospital would be accredited NOB.
 
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