CMITM claims 1.2m medical tourists


70% of medical tourists from the USA live in three states: California, Texas and Arizona, states along the Mexican border. It is easy to drive to Tijuana, Mazatlan, Chihuahua, Cabo San Lucas, Monterrey, and Mexico. Most medical tourism is in the border states but states in the Mexican southeast are beginning to have a considerable increase.

CMITM says that the main medical conditions treated are heart diseases, lung diseases, diabetes, organ and tissue transplants, but over half of all treatment is dental treatment.

On average, treatments in Mexico are between 30% and 50% cheaper than in the USA.

Many numbers have been claimed for inbound Mexican medical tourism, but they are often based on pure guesswork or are inflated by the many Americans who go to Mexico to buy cheap legal drugs from clinics and hospitals, without having treatment.

According to the Ministry of Tourism, Tijuana alone had 1.7 million patients and companions in 2018 (both domestic from Mexico and international), mostly from the US, Canada, and Mexican states Jalisco, Sinaloa, Sonora, Nuevo León, and Mexico City, with revenues of US$600 million. The Mexican state of Durango in North West Mexico is also seeking to attract medical tourism to its hospitals, clinics and rehabilitation centres.

Many Mexicans work in the USA but still live in Mexico, and more Mexicans live in the USA and travel within the country for treatment. Identifying actual US medical tourists rather than accepting ones based on political PR or guesswork, is tough.

For further analysis of the medical travel sector in Mexico, visit the IMTJ Country Profile.



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