Nogales Dialysis this evening

Discussion in 'Healthcare/Insurance/Govt Healthcare' started by slackjawed, Mar 1, 2010.

  1. slackjawed
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    slackjawed Self deported

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    Here is the story;
    I have an appointment in Nogales, Mexico at a dialysis clinic. I am pretty lucky in that I only have to do this 2-3 times a year. I am unlucky in that it is a 7 hour round-trip, plus border crossing time to get there. I am lucky in that I have a friend who will drive me there, as I can't trust my own body to drive that far on my own.
    I will show up at the clinic, which is open 24 hrs a day, and get dialysis. I will pay cash, last time it was 240 bucks cash, American cash. The clinic is modern, well staffed and caters mostly to Americans like me. There is a pharmacia on-site. if I need meds, like Lispro, I will get it there, complete with a styrofoam cooler and dry ice for about a tenth of what it costs at home.
    I will meet see my holistic provider at the clinic, and will pay her 40 bucks to receive her advice and possibly some type of treatment with herbs or cactus.
    I will not use any insurance, and will pay American cash money in Mexico for treatment.
    The total cost will be less than 500 bucks, including meals and transportation.

    The last time I had to get this treatment in the good old USA was at UC Davis in Sacramento, 3 years ago or so, and the portion I was responsible for was almost 1100 bucks. That was the part my insurance didn't cover.

    Now the point of my post;

    While I am sure someone will be along to tell me what i am doing is wrong for some reason, that is none of your business, or the federal or state government's.

    Why is it so much cheaper to get this care just 6 miles from our southern border?

    Why are the drugs so much cheaper? They are drugs made in the USA, and imported to Mexico, yet they are about a tenth.

    Why is it that an entire industry has sprung up in Mexico to cater to the needs of American citizens like me, when the drugs and most of the care-givers are educated in the USA?

    Why was my deductable, when I had insurance and used it in California, more than the cost of traveling 350 miles each way, and receiving care, and meals on the way ect.?


    If someone would care to address these issues, i would love to hear the answers.

    In addition, I would love to hear how the current debacle in congress would make anything any better?

    I guess I just needed to vent, I am obviously not feeling well.........
     
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  2. California Girl
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    California Girl BANNED

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    I'm sorry for your predicament. Hopefully, one day, our Government will actually fix the problems in our healthcare industry, and not use the suffering of ordinary people to expand their power.

    Scum, the lot of them.
     
  3. PoliticalChic
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    PoliticalChic Diamond Member

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    My prayers go with you.

    The situation that you highlight, not the problem, is one that you are addressing by what is known as 'medical tourism.'

    When I was in Lancaster, Pa., I learned that many Amish also travel to Mexico for major surgery, since it is counter to their beliefs to buy insurance. They also pay the local hospitals in cash and receive the same discounts as insurance companies do.

    It seems that medical treatment is part of the larger globilization movement. Many in the Middle East and Europe travel to India, where American-trained surgeons open their own cardiac hospitals and serve patients at a fraction of the charges that they would pay in Europe and the US.

    I can only guess that economic conditions will direct the situation rather than healthcare bills.
     
  4. hjmick
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    hjmick Gold Member

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    Nogales. Damn.

    Best of luck to you Slack.
     
  5. slackjawed
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    slackjawed Self deported

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    I present the final cost for the treatment I received:

    Time: almost 24 hours spent to receive 6 hours of dialysis, and 1 1/2 hours of consultation

    Gasoline: $65.00
    meals: 2 people - $54.00
    Border tax - $20.00 (cost to cross from mexico to us, by mexican border guard)

    Treatment: Dialysis-$345.00, consultation with Med. Dr - $32.00, Consultation and oversight of treatment from my holistic provider - $20.00 requested, paid her $40.00, Opthamologist - $28.00, pharmacia bill for meds perscribed - $78.00, Bill at herb shop - $16.00, Tip to guards - $30.00
    Total treatment costs - $569.00

    total cash cost = $708.00

    The cost went up from last time, but then this time I had to tip the guards, pay for a second friend to eat, and had my eyes checked as well. I also picked some some fresh nopolito, and some other herbs as well. In Nogales, it has become customary to tip the armed guards at the clinic, without them we would all be sitting ducks for kidnappers. I tipped them enough that two of them escorted us to the pharmacia, the herb shop, and then to the border crossing.



    $708.00 would not touch this in the USA. There a few reasons that I know of for this, namely, the practice of 'defensive medicine', and the fact that for whatever reason the actual costs are much higher. If i had gone to the local hospital (yes even here in the sticks we have a modern hospital) I would have had to have two doctors confirm that the treatment was needed, preceded by testing I don't need but protects the doctors, hence the term defensive medicine.
    In Mexico, I bring my medical records, tell the doctor what I want to do, and he alone decides if that is reasonable, with no additional testing to protect himself.
    Since the last time I was there, last June, the cost of the dialysis went from 280 to 340, apparantly due to supply and demand. Still, a friend of the wife tells me that in the hospital she works in the cost if one pays cash out of pocket (which she claims NEVER happens) is $1850, or that is the "approved insurance charge. The additional testing to protect the doctor can vary of course, but I assume it would easily exceed 200 bucks, maybe more.
    I saw a medical doctor, educated at the University of Mexico in Mexico City - a well respected educator, for 32 bucks, slightly more than the 'co-pay' most people with insurance pay.
    Holistic practionioners are not approved in the US, so i don't know how to compare that.
    I paid for safety, i don't know how to compare that to anything in the US either.

    I don't know how much an eye exam for eye health by an opthamologist is here, but I do know that an eye exam by an optomitrist is more than 28 bucks, and if he sees eye health issues (he might, or might not) then the optomitrist refers you to an opthamologist.


    Anyway, I am still ranting. I am still asking how can this be? I am still asking why our so-called leaders don't stop the charade and actually do something to improve the situation for the american people.

    What is it that they are attempting to do that will make the costs lower for us again? I missed it if they are actually doing something along those lines.............

    please excuse my spelling and grammar, still not quite myself.
     
  6. uscitizen
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    uscitizen Senior Member

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    Good luck SlackJaw.

    Most drugs are NOT made in the USA.
     
  7. editec
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    editec Mr. Forgot-it-All

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    Anybody know of a good dental clinic in Mexico or Canada?

    I'm needing dentures and am reluctant to spend nearly $10,000 on a procedure which I am informed is fraught with problems even in the best of circumstances.

    I'm pretty much willing to travel anywhere in the world where I can be confident that the final outcome will be happy, and the cost isn't quite so dear as it is here in the USA.
     
  8. slackjawed
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    slackjawed Self deported

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    I have not sought dental treatment in Mexico, however, there are plenty of clinics in Nogales that cater to Americans. The last time I was in Juarez, I also saw plenty there.
    Amador Dental is across the street from where I just came from in Nogales. I have no personal experience with them. The signs are all in english and spanish, the building is new and is guarded by the same group that guards the clinic I went to. Other than that I really don't know anything about them.

    I did find their web page for you though;

    Dra. Yolanda Amador, Dentist, Nogales, Sonora, MX. Mexico
     
  9. editec
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    editec Mr. Forgot-it-All

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    Thank you for the heads up, Slack.

    I'm looking for recommendations based on people's personal experience, but this is very helpful, and I truly appreciate you're taking the time to help.
     
  10. Missourian
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    Missourian Gold Member

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    When I was stationed in Sierra Vista we took a road trip to Nogales.

    That was the early 90's...we wouldn't even take a car across the border back then...no guarantee you'd get it back to the U.S.

    I spent 3 hour in Mexico and have never had a single inclination to turn.

    ..
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    .

    .I have had a similar experience
    in the U.S.

    I am required to get a Department of Transportation mandated physical every two years.

    If I pay cash, the physical costs $45...if I use my insurance, which covers the physical 100%, the clinic charges the insurance company $250.

    I only know this because the attendant informed me that if my insurance DOESN'T cover the physical...I will be required to pay the $250 amount.

    It's crazy.
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    To Ed-

    What are you paying $10,000 for?

    We have over 100 establishments here in Missouri that have custom dentures for $700 and extractions at $40 per tooth.

    I just googled this up as an example.

     

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