Tuesday, October 02, 2012

Doctor's Visit in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico


 Photo of San Miguel and the mountains taken from Balcones which is the highest colonia in San Miguel.  Even the rooftops here are attractive.

Off to the eye doctor I went yesterday, after having something weird start hurting on Friday night while out to dinner.  It was a festival weekend so I couldn't get into the doctor until yesterday.
I called yesterday morning at 9 and got an appointment for 11AM.

Here is how it works.  It's so simple.  You walk into the building.  There is ONE receptionist for all TWENTY doctors.  She makes the appointments and greets you, marks you off her book and directs you to go sit outside the doctor's office.

You know where the doctor's office is by the names on the doors.  So, one sits and at 11AM the door opens and the DOCTOR, not a nurse or nurse practitioner or anyone else, greets you.  It always amazes me. 

He invites you in and you sit in front of his desk and tell him what is going on.  Then one goes to the chair where he examines the problem, resolves it and at times, gives you a prescription.

To give you the prescription, you go back to the chair in front of his desk while he pulls toward him an old electric typewriter.  HE types out the prescription and hands it to you with instructions of how to take it.  You're done.

You walk back to the receptionist, pay your 600 pesos, about $48US dollars and get your prescription filled, if you wish, at the little pharmacy window.

Simplicity personified.  Each time I go to the Doctor in the USA, I ALWAYS wonder why they need so much staff.  These doctors here  seem to operate so efficiently and know you personally.  It's not just reading a name off a file.

To digress a bit, the other thing that happened yesterday to remind me that I'm in Mexico and not the USA was the fact that I needed to call an insurance company in the  USA regarding a bill I received that I knew I didn't owe.

I was ON HOLD for over twenty minutes, then it went to someone's extension and the message said that person, whoever they are, was not available.  Leave a message. I did.  I never heard back from whoever that is.............We NEVER have call waiting in Mexico - thank goodness!

Just a few observations on the differences of living here versus there.
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1 comment:

Steve Cotton said...

Here in Melaque, it is even simpler. No receptionist. No appointments. You just show up. And then the same routine as yours. But no typewriter. Just a pad and paper for prescriptions. And the cost is only $200 (Mx) for an office visit -- or house call.

There are at least two reasons for so many staff members in The States. 1) Trial lawyers just wait for a small error to dig into the pockets of doctors and their liability insurers. And the costs are then passed along to the health care insurers. 2) A good deal of staff are dedicated to figuring out the multitude of payment programs up north.

In Mexico, we pay out of our pockets. No bothersome third-party payers to contend with. And any lawyer suing a doctor for negligence in these parts would be laughed out of court.

Both of those reasons are also why costs are lower down here. They are also reasons to keep Medicare out of Mexico. If it is ever approved, watch costs soar and staff increase.