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Maintaining good health: A top priority for international executives.

For international executives and their families, maintaining good health is one of the highest priorities in life. Proper nutrition, frequent exercise and regular medical checkups can help prevent many types of serious health problems. And for conditions that can't be avoided, early detection, accurate diagnosis and proper treatment are essential.

Many U.S. physicians and hospitals offer special preventive care programs for Latin American families. By building a relationship with a health care provider in the United States, as well as within their home countries, many executives have access to the best of both worlds: immediate care in their own community, with readily available access to the most advanced diagnostic and treatment procedures.

Convenient airline connections and the growing tendency of Latin Americans to fly north for business meetings or to enjoy a family vacation make it easier than ever to access a U.S. hospital, physician or other health care specialist. And those north-south connections are bolstered by the strong ties between many Latin physicians and their counterparts in North America. Thanks to international medical education and training programs, many community-oriented physicians in South and Central America are familiar with U.S. facilities and can make appropriate referrals if needed.

Latin American patients are flocking to South Florida for executive physicals, second opinions and state-of-the-art medical care. Through Salud Miami (the Miami Medical Alliance), international patients have convenient access to a consortium of eight Miami hospitals.

"Our patient volume has tripled in recent months," says Victoria Brewer-Anderson, executive director. "The rapid, personalized response from our hospitals directly to our patients has been one of our greatest successes."

Participating hospitals include Aventura Hospital and Medical Center, Baptist Hospital of Miami, Cedars Medical Center, Mercy Hospital, Miami Children's Hospital, Mount Sinai Medical Center & Miami Heart Institute, South Miami Hospital, and The University of Miami/Jackson Memorial Medical Center.

"Miami has some of the best diagnostic facilities in the world, making it an ideal location for a checkup or a second opinion," says Anderson. Cancer, diabetes, cardiac problems, orthopedic difficulties and gastrointestinal disorders are among the leading types of cases seen by Salud Miami hospitals, according to Anderson.

To help prevent serious health problems -- or to identify them at an early stage when many conditions are more treatable -- Salud Miami hospitals place a special emphasis on regular checkups.

To support that goal, each Salud Miami hospital is offering a Comprehensive Health Assessment package for $795. This physical exam helps to familiarize patients with the hospital and its staff and to promote the concept of preventive medicine in Latin America. The assessment includes a complete history and physical examination, blood count, chemistry profile, hemmocult test, lipid profile, urine analysis, chest X-ray and electrocardiogram, and other tests are also available. Miami Children's Hospital offers a similar health exam for children for $500.

Health assessments or other appointments can be scheduled at the patient's convenience, and many Latin Americans arrange for a checkup for themselves or a family member when visiting Miami on a business trip.

Prospective patients can contact Salud Miami for help in finding the appropriate hospital, making travel arrangements and obtaining physician referrals. Physicians in Latin America and the Caribbean can send medical records, X-rays and other diagnostic reports, often via e-mail, to assist with the referral.
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No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2001, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Publication:Latin Trade
Date:Jan 1, 2001
Next Article:Simple sales tools -- powerful results.

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