Q-1. Why go to another country for medical services?

Hundreds of thousands of Americans and Europeans are traveling overseas for plastic surgery, dental and other surgical procedures and the numbers are increasing at a higher rate each year. The reasons for this are different for everyone. They range from the skyrocketing costs of surgery at home, long waiting lists and quality or lack of insurance coverage. Also, HMOs increasingly restrict the patients’ right to choose the surgeon while covering less and less of the costs. Finally, most medical health plans or insurance do not cover elective cosmetic surgery, so more and more people are discovering the option of traveling overseas for their surgery and combine it with a tropical holiday where they recuperate in a luxurious hotel on a Caribbean island paid for with the reduced costs of their surgery. Most people return home having saved thousands of dollars/euros.

Q-2 What can I expect in quality of care and facilities?

You can expect the same quality or better in hospital facilities as you would at home. You have the choice of the most experienced medical professionals in the country and follow up care with your own private nurse. Our clients are impressed by the quality of care, clean environment, professional caring doctors and personalized attention they receive through SSI.

Q-3. What are the costs that I can expect for surgery?

Generally you will find that most procedures are 50% of the equivalent costs at home.Prices vary depending on the procedure and your personal needs. For more cost information go to Get a quote or Compare prices.

Q-4. Why are prices so much less expensive than at home?

The cost advantage evolves from the lower cost of living and wages paid in these countries as compared to North America. Also, the great exchange rates ($1.00=2,100 Bolivar) you receive on your local currency means everything is less expensive than at home. Also, there are no waiting lists for private hospitals as they are relatively expensive for local residents, giving you guaranteed surgery time when you want it.

Q-5. Can I speak directly with the surgeon before I book my surgery?

Yes, a personal consultation can be arranged by telephone, or e-mail with your surgeon. Feel free to ask as many questions as you like and have your medical history information with you. We will provide you with a list of doctors to choose from and highly recommend you speak with more than one surgeon before making a decision.

Q-6. Can I have more than one surgery /procedure during the same trip?

Of course this is a possibility to discuss with your doctor. Many clients take full advantage of the low costs of all medical services in Isle Margarita and receive as many services as possible such as comprehensive medical exams including, MRI, full cardio work up, dental, lasik wavefront, botox etc.

Q-7. I have been advised not to go overseas because of the high risks associated with surger?

Surgery has inherent risks and complications no matter where you are. The most important aspect to receiving the best treatment possible is choosing the best doctor and facility. SSI investigates every facet of a surgeon’s credentials and practice to ensure that you have the best choices available to you. Our process for choosing doctors takes an average of three months and generally only one surgeon out of thirty meet our strict requirements.

Q-8 What services does SSI offer?

We offer assistance in finding a surgeon or specialist that is right for you. We provide information and act as a liaison on your behalf with the private hospitals, laboratories and private nurses. We also offer travel arrangements and accommodations at the hotel of your choice, transfers to and from the airport and medical consultations, and a personal bilingual assistant who will help you with anything you need during your medical appointments and treatment. We also provide a cellular phone during your stay and will be available 24/7 while you are here.

Q-9. Why use SSI instead of going directly to a hospital or surgeon abroad?

This is one of the most important questions. First of all, SSI is run by Americans who live in Isla Margarita. We understand what you expect in medical services. Choosing to work with SSI will ensure you have immediate access to the best and most experienced specialists. Since we are located within the country we are able to interview every doctor and facility thoroughly to provide you with any information necessary prior to your arrival. Our local knowledge of where to shop, visit, the best beaches and tours will make your stay in Isle Margarita much more enjoyable. Secondly, the prices we have negotiated with the hospitals, clinics, surgeons and hotel are always lower than should you go direct.

Q-10. How do I get started?

Complete and return to us the Quote Form. We will contact you if we require any further information. We will then forward your Form to the surgeon. They generally respond to us within 24 hours. All communication of a clinical nature (including your surgeon’s initial assessment of your suitability to undergo the procedure you are requesting) will be through us. Please note that your surgeon may require you to e-mail digital photos of the applicable areas that you require surgery as part of the initial assessment. Close liaison between us will be necessary to coordinate your trip and treatment and ensure that everything lives up to your expectations.

Q-11. How is payment handled for the trip and the surgery?

Your air tickets, hotels and deposit for surgery must be paid in advance through SSI. We will be pleased to provide you specific payment information once you have decided on the hospital and choice of travel date. Financing is available to US citizens please let us know if you wish information about this.

Q-12. Do I have to pay SSI any fee for their services?

No, you do not pay SSI for our assistance. We receive a fee directly from the applicable hospital or surgeon. Part of the fee we receive is used to provide local representatives that will assist you.

Q-13. Can I claim this treatment on my government or private medical insurance?

Not generally and especially if it is an elective surgery. There may be special circumstances; you would have to check directly with your local private/government medical plan.

Q-14. I am concerned about traveling by myself?

Please be assured that you never feel alone. You will be assigned a personal assistant who will meet you on arrival. This person will be your “friend away from home” and is at your disposal during your stay. That person will accompany you to all medical appointments and will be with you pre- and post- operatively in the hospital. You will also receive a cellular telephone for your personal use to ensure that you can contact your assistant at any time.

Q-15 How safe is Isla de Margarita?

Isla de Margarita is safe. The local Government has a low tolerance level for any types of crime against foreigners as the island is largely dependant on tourism. That being said reasonable safety precautions must be taken, which is no different than at home. Do not walk alone at night, and be careful of petty theft with personal belongings.

Q-16. What is your Privacy Policy?

Your personal information is only provided to the hospital/ surgeon and your local assistant on a “need to know” basis. To ensure that you are well looked after during your recuperation period, SSI will inform your hotel that you have undergone a “surgical procedure”. No further details will be divulged unless necessary and with your permission. Your information will not be released to any third parties, period.

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