There is nothing worse than being on vacation and getting sick. Whether it’s an ear infection or a case of Montezuma’s revenge, you may find yourself needing some medical treatment while visiting Mexico.
If you are staying at a larger hotel or resort, they usually have the name of a doctor who is available to tend to your medical needs 24 hours a day. Although this may be a good option after normal business hours, it can be fairly expensive. An average consultation from a hotel doctor ranges between $100 – $150 USD. The price can skyrocket from there depending on the type of treatment you require.
Just in case you aren’t familiar with currency designations, USD means U.S. dollars.
For minor issues, you may want to turn to one of the many doctors’ offices affiliated with pharmacies. There is no insurance required and they are very inexpensive.
In Spanish, these are called consultorios medicos, or just consultorios for short.
During business hours, you can be examined and treated by a licensed physician. One of the benefits of using this service – other than the cost (see below) – is that any prescribed medications can be obtained at the pharmacy next door.
Average Cost of Treatment
Prices vary depending on location. Here are a few prices from a consultorio in Tulum (not the one shown in the picture):
Medical Consultation: $45 pesos ($2.25 USD)
Blood Pressure Check: $15 pesos ($0.75 USD)
Blood Sugar Check: $30 pesos ($1.50 USD)
Stitches: $55 pesos ($2.75 USD)
I think an example is needed in order to really understand just how affordable this option is for people.
Let’s say that you have strep throat and you go to a consultorio located at a pharmacy for treatment and medication:
Consultation $45 pesos ($2.25 USD) + prescription for Cephalexin $69 pesos ($3.45 USD) = 114 pesos ($5.70 USD)
For less than $6 USD you are on your way to feeling better. Even with insurance in the United States, I couldn’t see my doctor for less than a $20 USD copay and that didn’t include the cost of medication.
More Serious Needs
If your condition is too serious for the pharmacy doctor to treat, he or she can still assist you by providing referral information for a nearby specialist or hospital.
For information on the average cost of more advanced health care (without insurance), check out Mexico: A Look at the Costs of Medical and Dental Treatment.
Let’s Wrap This Up
I’ve been very impressed with both the cost and the quality of medical treatment here in Mexico. The physicians generally spend a lot more time with each patient and the care is far more personalized than what we were used to living in the U.S.
Some physicians have even given us their personal cell phone numbers in case we have any questions or issues related to their prescribed treatment. That never happened to us back in the U.S.