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EF: From your perspective, and considering the hospital group's viewpoint, how do you perceive the year 2023 in Mexico? Do you view it as a year of challenges or opportunities? 

EVK: Indeed, it is a combination of both challenges and opportunities. Our primary focus is to address the health challenges faced by individuals and provide them with the necessary support. Sometimes, this leads to opportunities, but our motivation lies in serving the people rather than merely financial gains. We aim to expand and reach more cities because we believe that people require access to high-quality and affordable healthcare. This dynamic mix of challenges and opportunities is not unique to Mexico; it exists in the macroeconomic environment worldwide. Mexican people have shown great resilience in navigating these complexities. 

EF: Could you please provide more details about the extensive footprint your hospital group has in Mexico and explain the significant role you play within the healthcare ecosystem? 

EVK: Every day, we are striving to expand our presence to more cities. Currently, we have 20 hospitals running, and many more are under construction. By the end of the year, we expect to be on par with or even ahead of the number one healthcare system in Mexico in terms of the total number of hospitals. Our goal is not limited to major cities with existing high-quality healthcare; we aim to bring affordable and top-notch medical services to smaller cities, where people often have to travel long distances to access quality care. 

We currently have 20 hospitals located across 17 cities and are about to open in even more regions. The focus remains on prioritizing the needs of the people in these areas. The strategy has proven successful so far, and we are delighted with the progress. We firmly believe that there are exceptional doctors in every city across Mexico, and by providing them with a platform that includes high-quality systems, advanced technology, and efficient processes, we can empower them to deliver even better healthcare to their communities. Our collaboration with these talented medical professionals and our investment in state-of-the-art facilities and technology has resulted in a fruitful partnership.  

Over the last 15 years, we have grown from a single hospital in the heart of Mexico into a significant healthcare player. Last year, that first hospital was ranked 1st place among all the hospitals in the country in the small and mid-size hospital category. We are incredibly grateful to our dedicated doctors and medical staff who have contributed to this journey. Their expertise, combined with our infrastructure and processes, has truly been a match made in heaven, enabling us to provide top-notch healthcare to the population in smaller cities and towns across Mexico. 

EF: Could you provide further details about your recent partnership with General Atlantic and how you foresee this partnership increasing accessibility to healthcare in Mexico? 

EVK: We are thrilled about our partnership with General Atlantic, as they are the right fit to propel us to the next level. With their support and advice, we envision growing 2x or 3x in the coming years. Their investment of approximately 160 million USD (around 3,000 million pesos) is vital, but it is not just about the money. Their belief in us and our mission to improve healthcare accessibility in Mexico is incredibly motivating. Miguel, our founder, started with a big dream, and now General Atlantic believes in our management team's potential to make a positive impact in even more cities. We are humbled and excited about the opportunities ahead. 

EF: How do you assess the current emphasis on treatment over prevention, and what steps is the Hospitales MAC taking to promote a more preventative approach to healthcare in the country? 

EVK: I believe prevention is essential not just for Mexico but for every country. It is cost-effective and necessary for the healthcare system. Our hospitals' sizes reflect this approach, focusing on future trends where people take better care of themselves. We prioritize prevention through talks and collaboration with insurers and companies, promoting healthier lifestyles for the workforce.  

Our Hospitales MAC Foundation supports sick children and emphasizes prevention. By investing in prevention, we handle cases that require advanced technology more effectively. Hospitales MAC is well-equipped with cutting-edge technology, comparable to renowned institutions like Houston’s Methodist Hospital, or even better. Prevention is key to our success in healthcare. 

EF: How do you evaluate the utilization of technology in your hospital, especially considering your previous role as the director of innovation? Are your physicians eager to embrace it? 

EVK: Demonstrating the effectiveness of technology is crucial, not just to physicians but also to the wider population. It is not about flashy features; it is about the real impact technology has on patients, our workforce, collaborators, physicians, and their families. Let me illustrate this by tying prevention and technology together with an example.  

During the COVID pandemic, we used technology to sort patients and guide them to appropriate care. We partnered with a FinTech company to create a transparent, user-friendly algorithm to assess symptoms and direct patients to the right hospital or home care. This tool was freely shared with all hospitals in Mexico, public and private, proving that innovations can happen rapidly, even in slow-moving sectors. Through technology, we monitored patients remotely, provided vitamin kits, and prepared hospital beds in advance. As a result, our mortality rate during the pandemic was impressively low at less than 4%. Technology and prevention work hand in hand to save lives. 

EF: How do you go about attracting committed individuals who share the same level of excitement and passion for what Hospitales MAC is doing? 

EVK: That's a good question, and it truly humbles me. The growth of Hospitales MAC is not solely attributed to Miguel or myself, but to the incredible team we have. It is a diverse mix of highly talented individuals with a range of experiences that bring immense value. The work we do excites people and motivates them to stay because they see the positive impact of their decisions on so many lives. We are blessed with an amazing team, and I believe a bit of luck has played a role too. 

EF: If you were to create a hypothetical roadmap to the future of healthcare in Mexico, what would be the three fundamental pillars you would base it on? 

EVK: There are three crucial pillars we must focus on. First is accessibility, as we need more people to have access to our high-quality healthcare system. Second, reach, ensuring hospitals are located close to communities needing health services. The third pillar is cost. Being great and high-quality will not suffice if patients cannot afford it. Planning ahead for industry trends and managing costs over the years is vital. As private hospitals in Mexico, our partnerships must be built upon accessibility, quality, and cost considerations.  

One aspect we often overlook but has a significant impact, particularly on patients' families, is how we design our hospitals. The way that we are building our hospitals right now is by prioritizing crafting positive experiences for patients, their families, and our doctors. By building hospitals with thoughtful layouts, we ensure the close proximity of neonatal ICUs and adult ICUs to the Operating rooms but also have “happy floors” for healthy newborns and elective surgeries, therefore improving patient experiences. The hospitals are designed to feel welcoming and calming, reducing the typical hospital atmosphere. Our aim is efficient healthcare with highly specialized nurses, better outcomes, and shorter stays. We believe in delivering accessible, high-quality care to keep people healthy, benefiting both patients and insurance companies. Our efforts focus on making healthcare efficient, cost-effective, and comfortable, ultimately benefiting the industry and fulfilling our mission. 

EF: As you celebrate 15 years of existence, reflecting on your journey, what would you consider the most significant milestones or achievements during this period? 

EVK: Our biggest achievement was building the first hospital based on personal experience. Miguel's determination to provide better healthcare drove us. The second milestone was embracing the name "Mac" to symbolize our expansion beyond Celaya. Let me share something openly. Our name, Mac, originally stood for "Medica Avanzada Celaya," with a sole focus on Celaya.  

However, we had a pivotal moment when we realized it was not just about Celaya; it was about being "contigo" (with you) for all of Mexico. That shift led us to acquire the hospital in Aguascalientes and change our name to “Medica Avanzada Contigo.” We aimed to serve more people, marking a significant milestone. In 2016, Actinver and PineBridge venture capital's trust boosted our institutionalization, propelling our growth. From four hospitals in operation to 20 in just seven years, we are now looking ahead to the next milestones. 

August 2023