Medical Tourism: why thousands of Americans cross to Tijuana for medical treatment

The term “medical tourism” is one you may have heard with growing emphasis in the past few years. With the rising costs of healthcare costs both procedural and for premiums in the United States, citizens are seeking alternatives to various medical treatments. By seeking medical practices internationally, many U.S. natives have been able to drastically reduce the cost of their treatments and with the right research, have not had to compromise the quality of those procedures.

More and more Americans are now simply driving to Tijuana from San Diego at one of the most popular border crossings in the world – San Ysidro. Though they venture to Mexico for a variety of reasons, thousands of Americans are now crossing to Tijuana specifically for medical treatment. There are a number of reasons such a wide range of people are making the trip. The most popular treatments Americans travel to have done are dental procedures, cosmetic surgeries and weight loss treatments.

Medical Tourism in Tijuana

First and foremost, the cost of the treatment can be drastically reduced once you cross the border. Some reports show that medical procedures can cost up to 70% less in Tijuana than they do in the United States. This can mean a huge difference for a lot of people, and even be a deciding factor on whether or not they are able to even get it in the first place. Many offices also accept U.S. health insurance plans, offsetting the cost even further. Lastly, a large number of the Tijuana medical practitioners have trained in the U.S. or at other top universities. This means you can feel comfortable in getting the procedure (after doing research of course), for a fraction of the cost. A reliable, affordable and convenient place sounds perfect, right? Some offices even offer transfer services and will pick you right up at the border. Many also have consultation services that are complimentary, allowing you to get answers to all of your important questions way in advance. U.S. medical offices tend to have pretty long lead times as well to secure appointments. By choosing to have your procedure in Mexico, you can ease a bit of this headache as well.

If you’re traveling to Tijuana for a medical procedure, it will be imperative that you make it there on time. Key to achieving this is knowing what’s the best time to cross the Tijuana border. The ideal time to book a medical appointment is the first one of the day, as you won’t get delayed if they are running behind and the best times to cross the border are early in the morning. Depending on the procedure, you may even want to plan to stay overnight. It not only gives you time to explore the fabulous city of Tijuana, but it also means being to travel back across the border during the off-peak times.

It is important, however, that you do your research in advance. As with any procedure or doctor, it is important to understand all aspects of the pre-, during and post-op protocol, as well as the level of experience, education and satisfaction with the doctor in question.

In addition, you should certainly know about Mexico car insurance before finalizing your excursion. Some of San Diego’s top Mexican car insurance agencies like Mexico Border Insurance, are a great resource for securing a reliable and sufficient policy for driving your domestic car internationally in Tijuana. The Mexican government requires specific liability coverage that your U.S. policy does not apply toward. They can help you find the right plan that is customized to your vehicle type, length of time in Mexico, and more.

Overall, it is clear why thousands of Americans cross to Tijuana for medical treatment. A few of these reasons include the drastically reduced cost of treatment, the reliability of treatment and the amount of wait time required to secure your appointment. On top of those, other added benefits include complimentary consultations, the acceptance of U.S. health insurance and transportation from the border to the office.


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