Crossing the border for senior care
As the costs of assisted living, skilled nursing and memory care climb, some seniors are choosing to move south of the border.
Mexican senior living communities are attracting seniors from southern California, boasting cheaper prices and better cost of living than comparable environments in the United States, notes an NPR News article.
Some places, like Serena Senior Care in Rosarito, Mexico, cater to American seniors looking for a better way to stretch their retirement funds. About half the residents at Serena are American, many from the nearby San Diego area.
Retirement south of the border isn’t for everyone, warns Brenda Shorkend, an elder care consultant based in the Los Angeles metro region. “I've heard of people who've been very, very satisfied with the care there, and they think it's possibly better than in some places in the States. And I've heard of people where it's been a disaster,” she told NPR. “The language is different. The food is different. It's hard enough moving from home to an assisted living. So to [move] to another country, it can be very, very confusing for people.”
Mexican senior living facilities are regulated differently than their American counterparts, and since Medicare doesn’t cover services in Mexico, residents who live across the border need to come back to the United States if they need Medicare-covered procedures.
Pamela Tabar was editor-in-chief of I Advance Senior Care from 2013-2018. She has worked as a writer and editor for healthcare business media since 1998, including as News Editor of Healthcare Informatics. She has a master’s degree in journalism from Kent State University and a master’s degree in English from the University of York, England.