Our First Trip to the Hospital – Social Seguro – IMSS

Last Sunday we had 2 of the girls over for breakfast.  On the menu: Omelets, refried beans and toast!  Despite the fact that beans are a staple food in Mexico, we have never made them in our house the entire time I’ve been living here.  Whenever Ricardo needs beans, he runs to his mom’s place next door to get them… Much easier! 🙂

But Sunday was different, Ricardo decided he would make them himself.  After putting the beans and some oil in a pan he got the potato masher tool out (what is that thing called anyway?).  As they were cooking, he started smashing the beans in the pan.  As the oil got hotter, the pan became slippery.  He went to smash them again and the thing slipped up the side of the pan throwing a big scoop of hot beans right on his arm.  OUCH!

After fighting with him that he needed to put his arm in water NOW, he finally listened to me…For a few seconds.  It comes as no surprise to me that I was the most panicked out of everyone (I would be a terrible mother in an emergency.)  Ricardo took his arm out of the cold water after about a minute and went to sit at the kitchen table.  Smiling, he said he was fine.

It’s funny that Ricardo always loves going to the doctor’s when he is sick but when I told him we needed to go to the hospital ASAP, he refused.  I finally convinced him to call his doctor who told him he had better get that burn back under the cold water for at least 30 minutes and then go see a doctor in town.  Ah, thank heavens for doctors who can confirm that your girlfriend is right. =) haha

After going to the doctor in town and getting cleaned up we had to make a trip to the Social Seguro.  I’ve heard this is normal in any job in Mexico but I could be wrong… In order to call in sick for your shift you must have a note from the Social Seguro which is a hospital for employees with medical insurance through their employer.   The doctor in Las Palmas advised he would not be able to work with this burn as it was very susceptible to infection hence the need for time off work.

Social Seguro Emergency

Wait Times depending on your emergency ranging from immediate response to 4 hours.

As we were waiting a guy came in selling candies and toys to the patients. People are always selling things on the street, the beach, on the buses… I shouldn’t have been surprised… After all, this is Mexico!

Despite the signs and time frames, we only had to wait an hour to see a doctor so that was nice.  I’ve heard horror stories of it taking many hours to see anyone, I assume much like Canadian Emergency rooms.

The doctor sent him home with his note for 2 days off and a few pills.

Everything required to be treated at the hospital and to make sure that you can keep your job if you need to be off from work. I’m thankful for the Canadian medical system.

Pictures in the hospital waiting room! Ricardo and I.

Family Outing!!! Belen, Ricardo, and me!

Maria Jose, Ricardo and I in the waiting room:)

Ricardo is always all smiles. Even right after he burnt himself he just sat there smiling. Later he told me, it really hurt but I didn’t want the girls to worry. What a good papi!

The following day we had to re-visit the hospital in order to get more pills.  They reviewed his burn and told him he needed at least another 7 days off and sent him home with more pills.  Insurance covers prescriptions through the Social Seguro.  They had a small pharmacy at the hospital where he took a prescription to and they filled it for free.  The total cost of the pills were 60 dollars.  We should definitely have this in Canada with our BC Medical =)  (Doctors appointments and medicines etc through the Seguro are free for Ricardo but if he goes to another clinic or hospital he would have to pay out of pocket without reimbursement.  The first doctors visit in Las Palmas cost 40 dollars.)

****WARNING:  I’ve posted a few pictures below of Ricardo’s burn.  It’s not SUPER gross but if you have a weak stomach, I’d recommend not scrolling down.*****










My Poor babe!  This was 3 days after… It took me a good 3 days to be able to look at it long enough to get a picture.

Further away so you can get an idea of the size.

Are any of my readers nurses or in the medical field?  The doctor asked Ricardo what the burn looked like at first and what actually happened to the skin to determine what grade of a burn it was.  They said it was first degree, but it looks more like 2nd or 3rd in some parts!  Are their grade scales maybe different than I’m used to?  You can tell it went through a few layers of skin as the burn is sunken in compared to the rest of his skin, part of it is white still.


11 thoughts on “Our First Trip to the Hospital – Social Seguro – IMSS

  1. Poor Ricardo, that sucks. If you have any Vitamin E, (or high concentration Vit E cream) you can break open the capsules & apply too. It helps heal burns super quick, and reduces chance of scarring. I had a nasty oil burn once with cooking canadian pan fry perogies and accidentally hit the handle with my elbow, & flipped hot oil on myself( bad burn too), I grabbed some of my mom’s vitamin E capsules broke them & applied them super soothing & healed sooo quick, and didn’t scar.

    • unfortunately all my vitamin e capsules are in canada 😦 so sad! But that’s okay. it’s been healing up nicely. Today it even looks a bit smaller so that’s progress!
      Oil burns do not sound or look fun at all. And thank you for making me start craving perogies 2 weeks prior to coming home lol. I’ve been thinking about perogies for months now and i finally forgot about them. 🙂

  2. I’m a nurse and that burn does look a little more than first degree to me too! I just discovered your blog and have had a whole cup of coffee reading about your life! I relocated to La Paz Baja California about 4 years ago from the US after meeting my boyfriend in Mexico. I share your frustrations and awe at Mexican life and culture! Will definitely follow your blog from now on! Saludos!

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