Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Medellin: A Mecca for Medical Tourism

Medellin Finds International Recognition as a Mecca for Medical Tourism

The Medical Tourism Magazine featured Medellin as a prime destination for Medical Tourism in their March 9 article.

If you these days ask international tourists in Medellin why they chose Medellin over other international destinations, you increasingly hear that they're in town to take care of their health: Whether it's a complicated knee operation, a liposuction to quickly reduce excess weight or cosmetic operations to appear younger or simply more beautiful. Of course you can also get that "boob job" done here. Sometimes Medellin is referred to as the "Silicon Valley" of Latin America (pun fully intended).

Visitors who come to Medellin for medical treatment appreciate the top-notch service in the many hospitals and clinics in town. Concerned whether your health insurance will pay? Don't even worry about it! Even though medical services can easily be compared with Europe or the US, in Medellin they can be done for a fraction of what just the co-payment would be in the US.

And while you're in town, you might as well enjoy the ride: Medellin, also known as the "City of Eternal Spring" is famous for it's year-around pleasant climate and the friendliness of their people, called Paisas. And not to forget that Colombia is one of the few countries in Latin America with a pro-western, pro-US attitude. And while Medellin doesn't have a beach (other than a main road in El Centro called "La Playa"), there are many things to do: Horse back riding, hiking, bicycling, Salsa- or Tango-dancing, golf, ... the list is endless!

The Medical Tourism Magazine in December hosted a Familiarization Tour in Medellin to get to know this beautiful city and the state-of-the-art medical facilities which have their home here.

Next time you're considering an operation or cosmetic surgery, check-out Medellin as a safe, low-cost and FUN alternative!

Monday, March 1, 2010

No Third Term for Uribe!

Colombian Court Decided: Third Term for Uribe Against Constitution

A debate which has been going on for 2 years has finally been decided: Uribe will not be allowed to run for presidency for a 3rd time.

On Friday February 26 Colombia's constitutional court decided with a vote of 7 to 2 that allowing Uribe to run for a 3rd term would be against the constitution and would be violating democratic principles.

Uribe has been Colombia's president since 2002, when he was elected with a 53% majority. In 2005, the constitutional court approved an amendment allowing a single re-election. In 2005, Uribe was re-elected with an even more comfortable majority of 63%.

With his policy of confronting the FARC and establishing security in Colombia, pushing the civil war back into the most remote rural areas, he maintained high approval ratings throughout his presidency. Only recently public support of a 3rd term seemed to have faded.

The other candidates for the May 30 election are now re-calibrating their campaigns, which have been in limbo due to the unclear situation about Uribe's 3rd term. In a recent poll the current defense minister, Jan Manuel Santos led with a narrow lead before Gustavo Petro of the Democratic Independent Pole and the charismatic Sergio Fajardo, the former mayor of Medellin. Medellin would certainly love to see yet another Paisa after Uribe lead the nation.

Whoever wins the presidency, it will be key for the new president to continue with Uribe's policy of fighting the FARC and continue the process of re-establishing security in the country.