The Emergency Contact Card is totally different than the arrangements that you make in your will in the event of your death. The arrangements that you make in case of your death is to make things easier for your loved ones, and to make certain that your assets are distributed per your instructions. This is more important, what happens if you are ill and incapacitated, can affect the quality of the rest of your life.

This person or persons should live here on the island. There should be more than one, in the event you have an emergency while your first choice is on vacation, or was with you in the same car accident. (This will typically be the case if your emergency Contact is your spouse or significant other that lives with you in Cozumel).

Copies of an” In Case of Emergency Card” should be in YOUR CAR, MOTORCYCLE, WALLET / PURSE, and taped next to the telephone in your HOME in the event the emergency happens at home. Do not forget allergies, blood type and medical conditions!

Add your hospital preference! Remember, in Cozumel we are having the ambulance drivers compete to get patients to designated hospitals. You do not want to have coverage at IMSS or General Hospital and wake up with a huge bill at a different hospital!  This in-case-of-emergency card should be typed in SPANISH & ENGLISH with the names and contact information of your emergency Contacts.

The EMERGENCY CONTACT should have the knowledge and ability to:

Contact your family back home, & your Power of Attorney, etc.

Schedule themselves and others to remain by your side until your family arrives from abroad. Family members and friends are expected to be with the loved ones in most Mexican Hospital to assist with the care of the patient. This is toileting, bathing, feeding, and changing diapers, etc. It is also important if there is a language barrier.

  • Have knowledge and access to the whereabouts of all your documents.
  • Have access to your home to care for or arrange for the care for your pets.
  • Have knowledge of your home in case it needs to be locked up indefinitely or prepared for severe weather.

If this person happens to also be your Power of Attorney, they should have a means of accessing funds through a debit card.  If you have not designated a friend or Family member back home to be your Power of Attorney, with the legal document translated Officially and Notarized in Mexico, you better find someone you trust here to be your Power of Attorney. Here are some reasons why:

It is not uncommon in Mexico to have a patient’s family purchase medication not in-stock or have laboratory or other test done by another institution that requires pre-payment.

There are some insurance policies that do not cover all procedures. Those not covered will require payment.

In addition to hospital expenses, are there household employees (maid, gardener, pool guy) that will need to be paid? Will your pet or pets need money on hand for food or care?

If you are single and/or living alone:

Do you wish to stop all housekeeping, pool service, laundry service? These people will need to receive their final payment, or have someone in-charge of continuing to pay them in your absence.

What do you want to happen in your Contracted Services if you will be in the hospital long term or returned to your home country for treatment?

If instructed, the Power of Attorney will be able to turn off your cable service, telephone service, and internet service. These services will only close the account once they receive payment in full for what is owed to them.

Now, these are things that I have come up with based on a household only. If you have a business here in Mexico, you will need to think through and make arrangements to have all your bases covered within the business.

Aura Holguin-Resch
The Cozumel Sun News
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