Guide to Medical Evacuation from Mexico

Medical Evacuation by Air

While medical insurance provides certain coverages for you in Mexico, sometimes a fully-managed medical evacuation plan that transports you back to your doctors, your family, your healthcare network and your hospital of choice in your home country might be necessary.

This guide explains what medical evacuation is, how it’s different to medical insurance, who can make use of it, and how you can arrange a medical evacuation plan for your stay in Mexico.

What is Medical Evacuation from Mexico?

While Mexico offers patients an ample choice of quality medical care facilities in-country, there are times when a Medical Evacuation may be necessary or preferable to medical treatment locally.

Medical evacuation is typically undertaken when people have a catastrophic illness or accidents, primarily cardiac events, strokes, or serious injuries and vehicle accidents. Patients might also be medically evacuated when they need a transport to a specialty hospital or when their medical condition has been stabilized locally, but ongoing care  is best undertaken at a medical facility near to family back home or where their primary healthcare plan can cover such care.

Medical evacuation is logistically complex: it goes far beyond the arrangement of a private flight (although the private flight is a major cost). Managing such a  flight  in short-order — securing flight permits, arranging the ground transport for the pick-up in Mexico and subsequent transfers to medical facilities at the foreign destination — requires the right team and experience.  In addition, there’s the co-ordination with local doctors and healthcare facilities across borders (often in different languages), dealing with customs and immigration formalities, and taking care of all the payments upfront along the way: a medical evacuation is a very significant undertaking which involves many people working in unison to ensure a patient in critical or serious condition is transported safely, comfortably, and quickly to a medical facility outside of Mexico.

Flying When You’re Very Sick

It’s worth bearing in mind that commercial airlines will not fly passengers who are in a severe medical state, so it’s false to presume that, in the event of an incident that leaves you or a family member in a medically-acute situation, you’ll be able to be flown home on a regular flight.

How does Medical Evacuation work?

Even if you are covered by a Medical Evacuation clause in a typical travel insurance plan, or believe your Health Insurance will cover such a medical evacuation, you may find it does very little to bring you home to your hospital of choice or even across the border to your home country.

Once the doctors in Mexico and in the foreign country you intend to evacuate to agree that Medical Evacuation is necessary,  the Medical Evacuation company will spring into action and work through the complex logistics needed to make a medical evacuation happen.

If you have a Medical Evacuation Plan in place, the evacuation company will manage everything using procedures set in place to support evacuees; everything is taken care of on your behalf and all the costs are covered without deductibles or out-of-pocket expenses for you.

If you don’t have a Medical Evacuation Plan, you’ll need to approach a company that specializes in medical evacuations and pay in advance of any services required. These fees usually range from US$40,000 to US$60,000 for a dedicated air-ambulance to transport you from Mexico back to the US or Canada.  If you yourself are not able to release the funds (due, for example, to your incapacity) then a member of your family or a friend will need to make arrangements.

Medical evacuation companies do not offer credit terms.  This is why having a Medical Evacuation Plan in place makes sense: it prevents you from having to raise significant amounts of money in short order (and the delays which inevitably ensue with payment transfers, etc.) and, even if you have the money, an evacuation plan means that you’ll benefit from a service that is continuously on-standby should you ever need it, and without delay

Once activated, the evacuation company will provide everything you need for a formal medical evacuation from Mexico to an arranged destination in the United States or Canada, and all of the complex logistics will be undertaken on your behalf.

When is Medical Evacuation appropriate?

Whether you’re covered by a Plan or have the cash to cover the significant cost of a self-funded medical evacuation, you won’t get medically evacuated if you have a modest illness or light accident.  Medical evacuation is a service that is used only when a genuine need arises. The doctors treating the patient, the doctors at the hospital you are seeking transport to and the medical director for the air ambulance company are the key decision-makers in these circumstances.

Medical Evacuation is appropriate when:

  • The patient has medical insurance coverage in their home country (or can pay for medical coverage when they arrive there)
  • An acute or catastrophic medical situation arises; for example, a heart attack, stroke, or severe accident
  • The patient needs longer term medical care or convalescence which is best administered in their home country and cannot travel on commercial flights due to incapacity or illness
  • The patient needs specialty care not available in Mexico
  • Following stabilization after an acute medical situation emerges, the patient would prefer to be closer to their home hospital of choice, their family, their primary doctors, and their healthcare network for continued coverage instead of remaining in Mexico for care over the medium or long term

Do you need a Medical Evacuation plan?

As we explained in the previous section, you can pay for Medical Evacuation on a self-funded basis, but the fees are high and, moreover, during a time of stress, the delays caused in finding an evacuation company, making payment arrangements, and working out the details are not ideal circumstances in which to become caught.

A Medical Evacuation Plan will operate in the background and be available for you at a moment’s notice if you need it, without having to concern yourself about any of the logistical and financial challenges.  That’s why, even if you have the money to pay for a self-funded evacuation, it makes sense to be covered by a Plan if you’re likely to benefit from one.

A premium Medical Evacuation Plan is unique: there is no deductible, there are no out-of-pocket costs, and there is no dollar-limit on transport costs.  Therefore, Medical Evacuation Plans go beyond the typical travel insurance coverages that may take you to the nearest adequate facility (and probably far from home). Instead, they provide specialized and fully-managed bed-to-bed medical transport to your home hospital of choice, to your doctors, and close to your family.

For Visitors/Tourists: If you’re visiting Mexico for leisure or business, a Medical Evacuation Plan will ensure that you (or members of your family) get taken back to your local hospital and doctors in the US or Canada where you can be treated and have access to continued medical care.

For Residents in Mexico: If you live in Mexico — part-time or full-time — a Medical Evacuation Plan can provide bed-to-bed transport in the event that you or a family member needs to get back home in or after a medical emergency; for example, to take advantage of a medical insurance coverage you have there (for Canadians, this could be your government-provided coverage), or if you want to be close to family in the event of a serious medical condition which requires longer-term treatment.

Securing a Medical Evacuation Plan

Premium Medical Evacuation Plans that will transport you from Mexico to your hospital of choice in the United States or Canada are available.

Who is Underwriting Your Medical Transport?

A significant component of any evacuation plan is the company contracted to manage the medical transports and provide the aircraft, pilots, and medical crew.  There are a number of air-ambulance companies operating in the market, but we recommend you secure a plan that guarantees all transports will be undertaken only by a highly accredited EURAMI or CAMTS certified company, because companies that ‘bid out’ medical transports to unaccredited companies (and elect the lowest bidder) might be putting you and your loved ones at risk. EURAMI and CAMTS accredited air ambulance companies ensure only the highest quality medical personnel, pilots, and aircraft will be utilized during medical transport.

Mexperience is pleased to introduce our readers to Travel MedEvac, a licensed US-based company specializing in Medical Evacuation Plans and that only uses EURAMI or CAMTS accredited air medical accredited transport companies to support its plan members.

You can request a quote online or if you have questions and want to discuss your requirements in more detail, make an inquiry and a representative from Travel MedEvac will contact you personally.

Buying a Medical Evacuation Insurance Plan

When you buy an Insurance Plan using Travel MedEvac, you get:

  • A choice of competitively-priced plans that can be tailored to your circumstances
  • Plans for short, medium, and long-term stays in Mexico
  • Plans backed by a fully-licensed U.S. company
  • Plans that include fully-managed, bed-to-bed, medical transport out of Mexico to an agreed hospital throughout the United States and Canada
  • No deductibles, no out-of-pocket expenses, and no dollar-limit on transportation costs
  • First-class customer service and smooth claims procedures
  • Transport managed by Air Ambulance Worldwide guarantees only a EURAMI or CAMTS accredited air ambulance provider in their extensive network will be utilized for the best aircraft, crews, and care in the industry
  • Full transparency about plans and terms before you buy
  • The peace of mind knowing that in the event of an acute medical emergency you and your family can be expertly transported  to a hospital of your choice  in your home country, with all the logistics and costs covered

Arrange Your Medical Evacuation Coverage

There are two ways to get started:

Get an online quote for a Medical Evacuation Insurance Plan


Contact Travel MedEvac to discuss your requirements

Medical Evacuation Insurance Plan quotes are provided by Travel MedEvac, a US-based company offering fully underwritten medical evacuation insurance plans. Mexperience is not an agent or broker and acts solely as reader referral to our patron, Travel MedEvac.

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