Planning to Retire in Mexico –What about Health Care

Author Shirley Price

If you are at the point that you are seriously thinking about living in Mexico then you have probably spent considerable time checking out where are the best places to retire. You want to know what the pros and cons are.

There is little doubt that there are some beautiful places in Mexico and what is more Mexico is a great place if you are looking for lots of sunshine.  Let’s be honest the sun is something that most of us are looking for especially if you live in a place with long cold winters.

If you’ve been doing your research on places to retire for a while you will probably be aware that every year there are countries that are voted the best place in the world to live or the best place to retire.

Modern Mexico

For various reasons the results do change so one year it may be Panama that is voted the #1 choice another year it may be Ecuador, or Nicaragua, other years it’s Mexico. Even though Mexico may not be seen to be the cheapest place anymore it still remains one of the favorites.

Mexico has been voted the top place to retire many times over. One of the main attractions for retirees to live in places like Mexico is the opportunity to have a higher quality of living with a lower cost, making it affordable for many to live well on a fixed income. An opportunity to live with more for less, something most would not be able to do in their home country.

Mexico has had a lot of bad publicity over the last few years and it should not be ignored.  However, Mexico is a big country with a large population and many of the problems related to the drug wars are located in or near the border towns but there are isolated incidents in other parts too. Even so statistics show that each year more and more people are going there for vacations and to retire.

With the economy so bad; especially in the US where many people are being forced out of the homes and losing their retirement savings is it any wonder that they are looking for less expensive options. Mexico is also ideally situated for many Americans and Canadians that want to go back and forth to Mexico or have family in these countries that they want to have visit. With regular and somewhat affordable flights still available plus the shorter flying time it is also one of the pros to be considered.

Another big factor is health care, especially for retirees. Obviously they will most likely start needing more health care as they age. Already there are thousands of Americans that go south of the boarder to get their prescriptions, dental work and other medical care. Between the high numbers of those without health care insurance and the expensive cost of prescriptions in the US is it any wonder that they want to cross the border to visit Mexico and make these huge savings.

Something for everyone

Some have said that they pay $125 for a doctor’s visit in the US and as little as $3 in Mexico. It can cost $350 and more a month for private medical insurance in the US which makes it impossible for many.
Over the border for those that can establish residency in Mexico they could qualify for Mexico’s IMMS government insurance for around $300 a year with no deductible. It is somewhat limited in regards to pre-existing conditions, often longer waits and maybe older equipment but at least it’s available. On the other hand if you are prepared to pay for medical treatment you can find fast quality care and state of the art facilities and equipment.

Whether you plan to live in Mexico or visit for a vacation its worth knowing about the thousands of Americans that are going to places like Puerto Vallarta for medical treatment that they could not otherwise afford. The treatments retirees and others are going to Mexico for include procedures like hip replacements that could cost them between $80,000-$120,000 for treatment alone in the US; and can be done for around $13000 including travel and medical expenses in Mexico.

There are many things to consider before you make that final decision to live your retirement in Mexico.  Keep in mind that Mexico is not right for everyone. A lot will depend on your personality type. If you are a type A personality or someone that is short on patience and likes things done quickly it could be very frustrating for you.  If you get stressed out easily when you are kept waiting, then Mexico or a number of other countries favored by retirees may not be the place for you. A sense of humor and the ability to accept things as they are certainly helps!  Think about it most people are looking for change so if you want things to be exactly the same as you are used to; why are you thinking of moving anyway?

Watch the videos for more information related to health care in Mexico.

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