This article highlights the best private hospitals in Guadalajara for medical tourism and expat patient care.
Guadalajara is a major metropolitan area with an excellent healthcare system that is famous for medical tourism. One of the reasons that so many foreigners choose to live in this part of Mexico is the availability of quality healthcare. After Mexico City, Guadalajara has the largest number of hospitals ranked on Newsweek’s The World’s Best Hospitals list. Whether you are looking for a primary care physician, cosmetic surgery, or dental treatments, the hospitals in Guadalajara need to be on your radar.
It is no secret that the United States is in the midst of a healthcare crisis. Mexico has been providing medical tourists with affordable medical treatment for decades. Both Tijuana and Puerto Vallarta are popular destinations for medical tourism but Guadalajara is a better choice for top quality medical treatments.
Guadalajara has some of the premier hospitals in Mexico with expert doctors using the latest technology. There is no comparison between the comprehensive care in the hospitals in Puerto Vallarta and the new hospitals in Guadalajara.
An Overview Of The Best Private Hospitals In Mexico
One of the reasons that the capital of the state of Jalisco has an excellent quality of medical care is the university system. Guadalajara is a college town with some of the best medical schools in Mexico.
It is a major destination for students from across Mexico, Latin America, and Spanish-speaking parts of the United States to study medicine. Many decide to stay and practice medicine in Guadalajara because of the leading hospitals and excellent quality of life.
Medical tourism in Guadalajara is more focused on Mexican tourism than international patients. Patients come to Guadalajara from across Western Mexico because of the modern hospitals and the latest medical technology.
The hospitals that we are talking about in this article are located in the Guadalajara Metropolitan Area which includes Zapopan and Tlajomulco. The region continues to grow and some of the newest hospitals were built in the suburbs where they have access to larger properties.
Public vs. Private Hospitals In Mexico
This article is going to focus exclusively on private hospitals in Mexico. While there are many excellent public facilities in Mexico they do not cater to medical tourism. Patients must be enrolled in the Mexican Social Security Institute (IMSS) and speak Spanish well enough to navigate the complex system.
The biggest complaints about the public hospitals in Mexico are the long wait times and shortages of medicines.
It is likely that expats with small children will use the IMSS to get basic vaccinations. While there is a lot of talk in the news about the IMSS having shortages of prescription medications in my experience, IMSS had better access to basic vaccinations than our private pediatrician. He even recommended going to the IMSS because the vaccinations are free and more readily available.
Private hospitals typically have the newest technology and next-generation treatment facilities. Most expats consider private hospitals to have the best care.
It is important to know that private hospitals work directly with private healthcare providers. Uninsured patients will need to leave a credit card at the reception desk upon arrival.
The Top 5 Best Private Hospitals in Guadalajara
These five hospitals are the highest-ranked hospitals in Guadalajara according to the Newsweek article, Expansión Magazine, and my personal experience.
1. Hospital San Javier
The San Javier Hospital is a fine establishment and should be the first hospital in Guadalajara on your list for both emergency services and medical tourism. For the second year in a row, Expansión Magazine and Funsalud Blutilde rated the Hospital San Javier as the best private hospital in Western Mexico.
While the hospital has 28 years of experience, it more than doubled its size with the construction of a new tower in 2021. They were the first private hospital in Latin America to start using radiosurgery to treat brain tumors, and the first hospital to receive the “Specialty Hospital” certification for its work in gastroenterology, neurosurgery, cardiology, oncology, traumatology, and transplants, among others.
On a personal note, this is where my oldest son was born. I loved our experience at all levels from the nursing staff, to the security and cleaning crew, everyone treated us wonderfully. Our neighbor is on the general health council for general surgery, and maybe he is partial, but he says it is the best hospital in Guadalajara.
Every time my mom comes to town she makes an appointment to visit a dermatologist at the hospital. Dr. Ana Crocker is wonderful. There are more exceptional doctors at this hospital than I could review in just one article. The idea is that I love this hospital from personal experience and they are ranked as the best private hospital in the region.
If you are looking for a good doctor, the contact telephone numbers can be found on their directory.
International patients can have a look at the English language webpage.
- Address: Av Pablo Casals 640, Prados Providencia, Guadalajara (📍Map)
2. Hospital Real San Jose Lazaro Cardenas
Real San Jose is a hospital group with two modern hospitals in Guadalajara. The older hospital is the smaller of the two but it is located in the heart of Guadalajara on Calzada Lazaro Cardenas, the most important street in the metro area.
This is an important hospital to have on speed dial in case of an emergency. My uncle had some heart problems a few years ago and the Real San Jose Hospital was literally a lifesaver.
Ranked as the number 13 best hospital in Mexico by Newsweek Magazine, the Hospital Real San José is set up to handle international patients and medical tourists. They have a webpage in English with a directory of doctors. I recommend having a look a the vast awards and certificates the hospital has.
In addition to the emergency care, the Real San Jose has 7 operating rooms and 4 Endosuites equipped with cutting-edge surgical tables. One of the strengths of our Hospital is laparoscopic surgery which is less invasive and less painful.
- Address: Calz. Lázaro Cárdenas 4149, Jardín de San Ignacio, Zapopan (📍Map)
3. Hospital Real San José Valle Real
The Real San Jose Hospital Group just built a brand new, state-of-the-art, facility in the residential neighborhood of Valle Real. This is a huge hospital that isn’t fully occupied just yet.
We took my son to a doctor’s appointment here in July of 2023 and were blown away by the size and luxury of the building. It looks like a beachfront resort rather than a hospital. The facility is amazing.
There are actually two separate wings to this hospital. One is for surgical suites and emergency care while the second is for doctor’s offices.
The new Hospital Real San Jose was built with the most advanced technology and is going to grow into one of the best hospitals in Mexico over the next few years.
- Address: Av. Central 911, Poniente, Zapopan, Jal. (📍Map)
4. Hospital Puerta de Hierro Andares
Hospital Puerto de Hierro is another hospital group that operates hospitals in Zapopan, Tlajomulco, Colima, and Tepic. While all of their hospitals are part of the Mayo Clinic Care Network, the Andares location in Zapopan is the crown jewel of their group. Their Specialties Tower helped shape the skyline in this luxury neighborhood.
The Specialties Tower opened its doors in 2006. There are 23 floors of doctor’s offices with prominent and diverse specialists. On the first floors, you will find the laboratory, image diagnostics, luxury private rooms, surgical suites, urgent care, blood bank, and pharmacy.
This is a university hospital and the renowned Tec de Monterrey has a program where residents train in the state of the art facilities.
I took my son to a pediatrician located in the tower for a time before moving to a doctor’s office closer to home. The facility is on the other side of the city from where we live and the traffic is busy at rush hour.
Puerto de Hierro Hospital is ready and welcoming to receive medical tourists. They have a directory of doctors who speak English. This is the part of town with the highest percentage of doctors who are flawless in their English. It is also one of the more expensive hospitals in the area.
- Address: Av. Empresarios 150, Puerta de Hierro, Zapopan (📍Map)
5. Hospital Mexico-Americano
The Hospital México Americano is not on any of the list of the top hospitals in Mexico because it is a smaller facility. The reason that I am including it here is because of the maternity services. My youngest son was born here and our gynecologist and pediatrician have their offices across the street. The hospital is highly recommended by our doula (who also taught our Lamaze class) because of its humanistic approach to childbirth.
This is one of the few Guadalajara hospitals with a water birth suite and a surgery center.
- Address: Calle Colomos 2110, Ayuntamiento, Guadalajara (📍Map)
Final Thoughts On The Best Private Hospitals In Guadalajara
Guadalajara is often called the Pearl of the West because so many people fall in love with the city. Quality health care is a part of that love. I have had the pleasure of getting to know doctors as people as well as physicians.
I understand why Puerto Vallarta is such a popular destination for medical tourism but that decision is based on the best beaches and not the best hospitals. If you are looking for the best medical institution for a procedure, I would start by looking at the hospitals in Guadalajara.
If you are an expat relocating to Guadalajara, it would be a good idea to have the contact information for a hospital near you. You might even take into consideration the local hospitals when choosing a neighborhood in Guadalajara.