Paolina Parra was born and raised in Mexico City and currently lives in Bucerias, just a short drive from Sayulita. A representative of SkyMed Medical Evacuation Plans, she sells evacuation plans from Mexico back to your home country in the event of a serious medical emergency. While no one wants to make use of a medical evacuation plan, such as this, but having a plan is something that can help save your life.
How did you get your start working with SkyMed?
I went to San Miguel de Allende last summer, escaping the heat, and ended up meeting the team leader for SkyMed in Mexico there. She asked me if I would be interested in learning about their services and possibly representing them where I live in Mexico. Once I learned about it, I understood its importance, and I realized that it would be an awesome product to offer a growing expat community living in Nayarit, such as Sayulita. So I immediately accepted to join the SkyMed family.
What, exactly, is SkyMed, and what services does this company offer?
SkyMed Medical Evacuation Plans is a medical evacuation membership plan. We are the bridge back to your medical insurance in the U.S. (Medicare, VA or private insurance) or Canadian provincial insurance.
We offer 12 basic, but vital services, the main one being hospital to hospital evacuation, and we make all of the arrangements for you. The only thing a member needs to do is to contact the head office by phone once the patient is being stabilized. SkyMed then needs a diagnosis from the attending physician. That way we’ll be able to determine what level of evacuation the member needs: in a private air ambulance, commercial flight with a medical escort, or just commercial flight.
Will you share a little bit about your various membership plans?
We offer two major types of plans: One for snowbirds who live up to 6 months in Mexico, and one for expats, who stay in Mexico year round. From there, we have Individual and Family plans. Any two adults that share the same address count as a family. We have a third subdivision for expats over 75 years old, which we call Silver Xpats, and these memberships would be the most expensive ones due to its nature. The good news is that SkyMed accepts many new members over the age of 75. However, we don’t increase the rate when you get older once you become a member, this only applies when you first join. It’s like we stopped you from aging. Once you are a SkyMed member, you are guaranteed renewal for life and all future medical conditions are automatically covered.
Why is it important for someone to have a medical evacuation plan?
To have peace of mind, just like with any other type of “insurance”, like home or life insurance. You want to avoid being charged anywhere from $30,000 to $50,000 USD for a private air ambulance to get you back to the hospital of your choice in a medical emergency. SkyMed takes you home and even makes the hospital bed confirmation for you.
Having a medical evacuation plan could save your life and protects your nest egg.
Would you share a story about someone who has had a medical evacuation plan with SkyMed and has had to do use it?
A SkyMed Medical Evacuation Plans member from Puerto Vallarta woke up one morning with pain in her lower left side. She went to an excellent local hospital where they ran all the right tests, but came back to tell her that she needed a colostomy surgery. At the patient’s request, she was discharged from the hospital and went back home on a Friday night. She then called SkyMed to ask if they could help her get back to the U.S. for a second opinion. And so it was. She was flown commercially the following day at 9:00 am so she could go to her hospital to get treated by her personal doctor. The hospital in the U.S. did the same tests, and they confirmed the same diagnosis, but they didn’t consider the surgery was needed. They only detected an infected diverticulitis, and medication was prescribed. The patient then returned to Puerto Vallarta and hasn’t had a problem since. The SkyMed plan helped her avoid an unnecessary surgery and having a colostomy bag. Had she been more critically ill and unable to fly home commercially, she would have needed an air ambulance flight, already covered by her membership plan.
What sets SkyMed apart from other companies that offer the same type of services?
We have a saying that goes “SkyMed: Often Imitated Never Duplicated”, but no other company offers such a comprehensive and flexible range of services: It is by member’s choice. Even if the hospital you are initially in is perfectly capable of treating your condition, you, as a SkyMed member, are the one who decides if you want to be evacuated to your home hospital. If a member has a serious diagnosis but they are NOT hospitalized, they may still qualify for a commercial flight to return to their home hospital area of choice for a second opinion, further tests, and or treatment. Also, there is guaranteed renewal of the same level plan for life or as long as you need the protection.This is what we do, and No One Does it Better!
How affordable is it to purchase a medical evacuation plan with SkyMed?
An Annual Individual Plan with our 12 basic services for a Snowbird costs only $299 a year and for a family only $499, plus a $75 USD one-time application fee. An Annual Plan for an Expat only costs $595 a year for an Individual and $995 USD for a family, plus the one-time application fee. We also have Monthly Snowbird Plans covering all of our 18 services for $45 USD for an Individual and $59 USD for a family. We offer Short Term Plans, which also include the full 18 service SkyMed coverage for only $9 USD per day for an Individual and $15 for a Family. Lastly, our most popular plans are the Multiyear Ultimate Plans that include all our full 18 service protection, so you get more services for the same or less amout per year than an annual plan.
Anything else you’d like to add?
In a medical emergency, you’ll either be glad you had SkyMed, or wished you did.
For more information on our SkyMed Medical Evacuation Plans, please click here. You can also contact me directly at (322)-118-8145 or email me here.