Today we went for our initial IMSS doctor appointments/checkups. IMSS tries to see new people every two months or so, whether or not you have anything wrong with you. And they are big into preventative medicine. We went to the IMSS hospital across from Kntucky fried chicken on Fco Medina, a block or two south of Caracol shopping center.
Our appoints were for 11:30 so our ringleader, Robin, knowing the system a bit better than the rest of us, suggested that we go at 9:30 because, she said, they don't really care about the appointment time; they really only care who is there first.
She was probably right. We got there just after 9:30 and were weighed and measured within 15 minutes. Then we were told to go to "Medicina Prventiva" for shots and stuff. People are offered different shots according to their age and sex. You are not required to have any immunization shots if you don't want them. One of us didn't get the flu vaccine because of an egg allergy (the vaccine is made with eggs).
The receptionist sized us up immediately and found a translator for us and he took us over to preventive medicine on the other side of the building. We had thought that we were doing fine but I guess she noticed that when she had said "derecho" to me while standing on the height scale, I turned right.
The nurse in preventive medicine was delightful. She didn't speak English but she knew what she was doing and she laughed at my jokes about being afraid of shots. She also laughed when, after she asked if I had anything else wrong bothering me, I said soy viego. She said there was nothing she could do about that and laughed.
After we we got the shots and another appointment tomorrow morning for cholesterol and diabetes tests we went back to the main area and were shown in, one by one to see the doctor. He spoke excellent English and asked me only how I was doing and if I needed anything. One of our group arranged for a colonoscopy while talking to the doctor. One of us got antibiotics for some big cuts on his legs and one of us asked for worm medicine for all of us, kind of like a mother hen would trying to protect her brood.
We made checkup appointments again for the end of December and went to the farmacia at IMSS for the antibiotics and worm medicine. That takes only a second but they were out of wormer so we were told to come back at the end of the week for it.
The whole process was finished a little after 11. 4 people, mulitple shots, 4 consultations and a trip to the farmacia in around 2 hours. Not bad.
I'd recommend going early in the morning for any appointments until everyone starts doing that and then switch to afternoons....
"À chacun son goût"