Roberto Bonilla
Director General
Hospital San Ángel Inn
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View from the Top

Good Infrastructure, Quality Care, Lower Prices

Wed, 09/06/2017 - 12:02

Q: What makes San Ángel Inn different from its competitors?

A: Our management model, which allows us to provide patients with less costly services while delivering a long- term return on investment. We o er good infrastructure with quality care at substantially lower prices than our competitors. That is why we are the preferred hospital for closed-network patients and companies that manage their own healthcare benefits. Other hospitals target individual patients while we want to attract businesses that will direct their employees to our hospitals.

Q: How does the hospital group keep up-to-date with technological advancements?

A: San Ángel Inn makes an e ort to be up-to-date but our strategy does not require having the latest technologies. We make sure we have the modern and functional technology to resolve 97 percent of the cases we encounter, so having state-of-the-art technology does not make sense with our business model. The only treatments we cannot perform because of technological limitations are radiotherapy, PET/ CT and some oncological treatments. We have a capable medical team, enough technology and good infrastructure.

Q: What challenges do you encounter when hiring and retaining nursing sta ?

A: The issue is not in retention but in recruitment. The nurses working at San Ángel Inn must have at least an undergraduate degree. Our competition regarding human talent are not private hospitals but public, because nurses in the public sector work only five days a week and receive better benefits than we can o er. We attempt to create a pleasant, patient- oriented work atmosphere where nurses can grow. Within this model, a nurse’s satisfaction does not derive from the benefits the hospital provides but from gratified patients. When a patient has a good experience, the whole team is pleased.

Q: What plans does San Ángel Inn have to expand?

A: We will finish consolidating our presence in Mexico City. We have a new hospital in Patriotismo and we are about to open a new short-stay and ambulatory clinic in Mier y Pesado. This project is an opportunity to enter a new niche with a new business model backed up by other hospitals if complex treatments are needed. We opened this clinic because our customers asked us for a location where minor surgery could be performed.

Q: What are the main challenges and concerns for San Ángel Inn?

A: Our main concern for the next four or five years is the patient’s access to healthcare, which mutual health insurance coverage could solve. In Mexico, people have access to diverse health services through IMSS, ISSSTE, PEMEX and other public entities, while private coverage is scarce, with only about 7 percent of the population under such plans. This percentage has not grown in the last 10 years despite an expanding middle class. Moreover, our main institutional clients are changing. Banks do not want to continue using reverse quota schemes and prefer to pay for social security while some insurance companies are considering dropping high medical-expense insurance on which they lose money. We need to learn to collaborate with other industry players to improve access to health. Our main challenge is in understanding how to increase access to private and public medical insurance.

Q: What impact do you expect to see from the model of chronic disease insurance?

A: It could improve the access to health services. Diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and cancer are the main causes of death in Mexico. A person who has corresponding coverage has a 30 percent chance of access to a good hospital in case something serious happens. San Ángel Inn is creating a product specifically for cardio-metabolic and cardiovascular disease. This low-cost premium scheme is far more accessible. However, there is no insurance or prevention culture in Mexico. Hospitals do not focus their marketing on creating awareness about the need for health coverage because the existing demand for their services is enough for most to perform relatively well.