Friday, January 16, 2009

Health Care Reform: Sharing Our Learnings from our Experiences in Mexico

Not only have we learned from our experiences in providing health care in the U.S., but we have also gained much knowledge from our experiences in Mexico. CHRISTUS Health partnered with a Mexican health care group in 2001 called Grupo Muguerza, and that partnership has since grown to include seven hospitals in 6 Mexican states as well as four short-stay hospitals for the poor.

Because the Mexican health care system is structured somewhat differently than what we are familiar with in the U.S., our partnership has given us a chance to explore other ways of providing care and evaluate their effectiveness. For instance, care in Mexico is what I call segmented, which means they provide the same quality health care in different settings and with different amenities according to the patient’s or family’s ability to pay for such amenities. I think segmented health care may be something we need to explore in the U.S. as we search for ways to make health care in our country more affordable.

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