Read the Conversation

EF: What are the main priorities and opportunities for MAC Hospitals in 2024?  

MKS: Hospitales MAC was founded fifteen years ago and has been growing rapidly. The challenge we now face with our partner, General Atlantic, is creating a more structured organization. We have twenty hospitals and are building eight more to be opened in 2024 and 2025. With units in 17 different cities, we are the largest hospital chain in Mexico regarding geographic presence. However, with the new buildings and some acquisitions we are currently considering, next year, we will become the largest hospital company in terms of the number of hospitals, too.   

The next strategic step is to focus more on quality than volume. Our goal in 2024 is to have the best services, quality, and brand awareness in the hospitals. We no longer aim to grow only in size; we want to become Mexico´s best-quality hospitals. This challenge includes building an integrated information system for all our hospitals. Due to our many acquisitions, we currently have several information source systems, and our 2024 mission is to create a single structured system with more reliable information.  

EF: What is the most strategic KPI when investing in healthcare opportunities in Mexico? What would be your advice to other industry stakeholders?  

MKS: There is a lot of space to invest. There are many opportunities for new players in the medical sector. Offering the right initiatives like insurance and services is crucial to draw more people to the private sector. Several areas, like hemodialysis or cancer treatments, present significant healthcare prospects. It is essential to have faith in our country, invest in it, and grow Mexico's pharmaceutical and healthcare capabilities. 

EF: What incentives could attract more people to the private sector?  

MKS: There is currently a low number of insured people in Mexico's private sector, and increasing this count is challenging. Over the next five to ten years, our goal is to achieve numbers similar to those in countries like Brazil. My mission and vision in the hospital sector revolve around democratizing healthcare and making it accessible to everyone in Mexico. Our hospitals are well-equipped, staffed with highly trained professionals, and offer competitive pricing compared to other quality hospitals in the country. We aim to become the preferred choice for the Mexican population, especially those with lower to middle incomes. To address financial barriers, MAC has launched a spinoff company called MediBank, which provides financing for individuals in need of medical services but facing financial constraints. The goal of MediBank, launching in January 2024, is to offer fair funding options at low interest rates, ensuring accessibility to medical care for those in need. This initiative aims to create new opportunities within Mexico's fragmented healthcare system. 

EF: How do you balance high-quality services with low access costs?  

MKS: Our company believes that quality does not have to come with a higher price tag. We focus on delivering top-notch services from the start, making it the standard for our employees, and this does not result in extra costs for patients. We invest in quality equipment, and we prioritize training to ensure our staff stand out in their roles. As part of this commitment, we are establishing nursing schools, starting with the first in Aguascalientes. The goal is to have nursing schools in all cities where our hospitals operate, aiming to provide the best possible care by training exceptional nurses for our patients. 

EF: We know Mexico has a shortage of medical professionals; how are you creating the right environment for patients and employees?  

MKS: Our doctors do not work directly for MAC, as they are not on our payroll, they are independent medical professionals. They rent or buy our medical offices and bring their private practice to the hospital because we have excellent equipment and nurses for their patients. A doctor needs a great environment to excel in his work, but many people cannot pay for their health in Mexico, which creates an imbalance. MAC offers medical offices at a price that is about half of what other reputable and branded hospitals in Mexico charge, thus providing doctors with an affordable and reliable setting essential for quality work. 

EF: Could you elaborate on how the MAC Foundation cares for the community beyond the hospital walls? 

MKS: MAC, which stands for Medica Avanzada Contigo (Advanced Medical With You), established a private foundation using funds from MAC Hospitals. This year, we have assisted 283 children with Down syndrome, with 50% of them requiring surgery for heart problems. These kids have minimal access to government aid and come from families unable to afford their medical needs. Without surgery by age four, their survival chances are extremely low. To support these children, we organized campaigns with the participation of doctors and healthcare providers. Looking ahead, we aspire to secure funding from various companies to expand our impact. Currently, MAC is the sole contributor covering the initiative's costs. 

EF: How are MAC hospitals shifting in the direction of preventive healthcare?  

MKS: Mexico has yet to prioritize a "prevention-first" approach in healthcare. There is a significant need for education, especially concerning preventive measures, which is currently lacking in the country. 

I believe private hospitals should step in to assist the Mexican health system by educating people about preventive healthcare practices like annual check-ups, adopting healthier lifestyles, and regular exercise. There is a considerable amount of work ahead of us, and it is a long journey. As part of our efforts, we are establishing a system called Bienestar (Wellbeing) within the hospital to educate our employees' families on preventive healthcare.  

EF: How is MAC Hospitals leveraging Digital tools and AI to generate an integrated structure in the hospital chain? 

MKS: We use outside providers to incorporate digital tools because making our own artificial intelligence tools is tough. Many companies have proposed options, especially in imaging, diagnosis, and prescribing medication, based on successful experiences elsewhere. We count on these firms to develop AI and new medical tech as we ride the wave of digital and tech advancements. We’ve already implemented several AI technologies for assisting doctors and patients across the hospitals. 

EF: Is there a final message you would like to share? 

MKS: MAC hospitals have excellent quality, are fairly priced, and contribute to the country's development. I believe in Mexico and that businesses should collaborate to improve healthcare in the country.  

When I first decided to build the hospital in Celaya, it was not difficult to sell the concept. The hospital was necessary; I was well prepared and knew what I needed to build a good hospital with a great staff. What was more complicated was to get all the funding to complete it. Believing in a dream helps to transmit the concept to more parties. If I had not believed in what I was doing, convincing others to invest would have been much harder.   

January 2024