What do you do when you are sick or injured in Rocky Point?

It is at least three hours’ drive to an emergency care facility. So a Peñasco clinic could be crucial.

Although practices we expect up north are sometimes skipped, we have received top-notch care many times at San José Clinic on Benito Juarez and other clinics. However, to assure that you get the best care possible, you need to play your part.

You will not be asked to fill out five pages of questions about your medical history and that of your close relatives, history of allergies, surgeries and current medications. The local doctor is likely to ask you if you have any allergies, but the language barrier can be a problem.

To make things quick and easy, make up a card or put a note in your phone that lists all the supplements and medicines you take on a regular basis and the dosage. List any allergies or sensitivities to medicines or foods. Identify any medical procedures or conditions that could be related to your condition. Update that information after any significant change. It will be extremely valuable in an emergency situation.

If you are just feeling under the weather and want the doctors to examine you, take a few minutes to type your symptoms and concerns into the Google Translator. You can date it and print out the information or just have it handy on your phone. Although many of the doctors and their staff speak some English, interpretation can be difficult when you are relying on “Spanglish” to communicate.

It is also a good idea to create your own Rocky Point medical file. Put those printed sheets you shared with the doctor and the prescriptions he gives you into a file folder. This will help the doctor during future visits and it will give you a record of which medications were effective for various symptoms.

Take that file with you when you return to see physicians in the U.S., so they have a complete picture of your recent issues and treatments.

Good medical care is readily available here, 24/7, but your best results will depend on your ability to communicate effectively with the medical staff. Planning ahead can make a world of difference.

As we say in Mexico, “Salud!” To your health!

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Cutline: The Google Translator in your phone can help you explain your symptoms and medical history when you have to visit a clinic in Mexico. A personal file of treatments can be even more helpful.