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Hi - I’ve been traveling to Mexico for a while - mostly via motorcycle, but leaving Friday and driving down to Guanajuato by way of Xilitia with my wife. I’ve not yet been to Chapala, but that’s is next on my list. I have a friend (well actually my wife’s friend) who lives there part of the year, so plan to do a trip down to visit with them for ‘scouting expedition’ and then do a trip down with my mom for about a week or two a little later. Basically checking the place out as a possible semi—permanent destination for myself, wife and mom. 

One of the questions I have is regarding the ability to practice medicine. My wife is an internist and we are wondering if there is an ability for her to use her skills in Mexico. Neither of us speak Spanish yet - though my mom does :). Any insight will be helpful.

Other question regards my hobby - trail riding. There look to be some lovely roads/trails in the mounains on both sides of the lake - does anyone know if there is a dirt biking/trail riding group around that explores those areas?

We also enjoy hiking - any insight into the local hiking scene will be welcome.

Thanks! 

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How many Mexican doctors who do not speak English and come to the USA from Mexico are allowed to practice there? Yes there are trail riding clubs and lots of hiking.

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Maybe your wife could practice with one of online medical service companies in the US. She could get paid in USD and would not be subject to Mexican taxes and regulations. 

Attached is a link to the Ajijic Hiking Group website. At the bottom of the opening page, there is a link to their Facebook page. The Facebook page has updates on planned hikes. There's usually at least two hikes a week.

https://ajijichikinggroup.com/

 

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To practice here your wife would have to obtain a Cedula, which is a professional registration number received from the government. It is a long process and here is one description I found online. She would also need to be fluent in Spanish.

 

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Spanish would be a must for your wife. As well as proving her skills to become licensed to practice medicine in Mexico called a cedula.

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I believe there is also community service involved in obtaining a cedula for a medical professional.

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To get a cedula, a practitioner must complete one year in public service.  Usually in under-staffed areas of Mexico.  She must speak Spanish but will be paid.  It might be easier and more lucrativeto do as an above poster suggested with an online medical consultation service.

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Be careful where you trail ride or hike in them thar mountains.  They "produce" some very valuable cash crops and the "producers" do not bother with "Posted: No Trespassing" signs. Other than that you will find plenty of safe places to do both.

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55 minutes ago, happyjillin said:

How many Mexican doctors who do not speak English and come to the USA from Mexico are allowed to practice there? Yes there are trail riding clubs and lots of hiking.

Fair enough. I deserved that. We have been taking Spanish lessons and are not planning on actually making a move for at least a couple of years, so doing pre-planning. The Cedula would be prohibitive, so that option is probably out. The telemedicine idea is interesting - though she was hoping to help out locally. We can both look for other ways to try to volunteer in the community.

I appreciate the feedback on the availability of local hiking and dirt biking and look forward to visiting. 

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5 minutes ago, CalamariKid said:

Fair enough. I deserved that. We have been taking Spanish lessons and are not planning on actually making a move for at least a couple of years, so doing pre-planning. The Cedula would be prohibitive, so that option is probably out. The telemedicine idea is interesting - though she was hoping to help out locally. We can both look for other ways to try to volunteer in the community.

I appreciate the feedback on the availability of local hiking and dirt biking and look forward to visiting. 

It's not just the language. It's the unacceptibility[sic] of her training outside the USA.Same applies to medical and dental professionals who apply in most countries other than their own. My wife's father was a dentist for many years in Germany and when they immigrated to Canada ,in order to practice, he would have been required to go to a Canadian dental college. Instead he opened up a dental lab. It's a good idea to remember that when you come to another "sovereign" country that it's not a move inside the USA to another state, for example, not just for this but "everything". There are all sorts of opportunities for volunteering here. So many,that it's hard to choose. A thought just came to mind, has your wife talked to doctors without borders?

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I do not see how your wfe can practice without Spanish.but once she does she may be able to via  a charitable organization if she is willing to go to areas like Oaxaca or CHiapas or part of Vera Cruz. The indigenous areas sneed more doctors and organizations from all over the world come and help and those doctors do not have cedula in Mexco ..I may be mistaken about that but I will ask a friend who is a doctor and helps in areas in the middle of nowhere.. We will say what she says.

If you do speak Spanish there are lots of areas to investigate so that maybe a possibility,,

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1 minute ago, bmh said:

I do not see how your wfe can practice without Spanish.but once she does she may be able to via  a charitable organization if she is willing to go to areas like Oaxaca or CHiapas or part of Vera Cruz. The indigenous areas sneed more doctors and organizations from all over the world come and help and those doctors do not have cedula in Mexco ..I may be mistaken about that but I will ask a friend who is a doctor and helps in areas in the middle of nowhere.. We will say what she says.

If you do speak Spanish there are lots of areas to investigate so that maybe a possibility,,

That's why I  suggested that she contacted "doctors without borders" who do their thing all over the world. I'm shocked that a person of French persuasion doesn't know about them,their original name being Medecins Sans Frontieres because they were founded in France. As we speak they are administering to the migrants all over Mexico. My son was a fundraiser for them.

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1 minute ago, Jreboll said:

There was a nonprofit out of Dallas coming down to do cleft palate repairs on kids. 

Internists do not do cleft palates.

 

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Understand that her Spanish needs to be very fluent. Years a go in a hospital NOB, a woman was hired as a translator who claimed to speak and understand Spanish. She had exaggerated her skill level and misunderstood when a child's parents explained his symptoms. She couldn't understand what they told her, and rather that admit she wasn't fluent, ignored what they said. She missed an important condition, the child was sent home with the wrong meds and died.

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Of course happyjillin, you know that there are lots of other organizations and churches that come down to do surgeries like cleft palates and other surgeries and other s and they are not MSF.. The Zapatistas have foreign doctors that come and help them as well.. I do not know if they all speak Spanish.but there are people who can translate.

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We has Dr. Whitehurst here for a bit.  He did not do any contributory public service.  He did not speak Spanish.    He returned to the US because the foreign community did not want to pay him 600 pesos a visit.   He was, and is back at it, a Doctor with the US military so perhaps you could find him through that acre and get his first hand experience.

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There are other places than Chapala in Mexico but good luck going by yourself to look for a job if you do not speak Spanish.. mu neighbor in Chipas who is a good GP charges 200 pesos.. do not expect to get rich... He worls from 9 am to 8 PM everyday...with a couple of hours for lunch.. I think that  the NGO s  are the way to go if you want to contribute and do not speak much Spanish

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I just asked a Mexican doctor who volunteers in Mexico and other countries if a foreign doctor can do the same in Mexico without havng Mexican credentials. The answer was yes. The condition was that the docor has to be invited to come and work in a commmunity to work in that community for so many months. Then the community need to provide food , lodging, schooling if there are children involved but cannot pay that doctor. THe ay to do this is through an organization  like a church or civil organization. The foreign doctor can volunteer but cannot be paid.

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