One in five Mexicans lacks health services – El Sol de México

Between 2015 and 2020, the percentage of Mexicans without access to health services grew from 16.7 to 21.5 percent, which means that one in five Mexicans lacks a place to go when they get sick or suffer an accident, reported the National Council for the Evaluation of Social Development Policy (Coneval).

“This deficiency has presented a heterogeneous behavior in the last decade, since, although there was a decrease between 2010 and 2015 of 16.9 percentage points, going from 33.6 percent to 16.7 percent, between 2015 and 2020 there was a rebound in this indicator of 4.8 percentage points. In such a way that, at the end of the decade, it presented a value of 21.5 percent of the population that did not have access to health services ”, indicates the organization in its report Evaluation of Social Deficiencies 1990-2020.

➡️ Cuatroté leaves 149 hospitals without concluding

The document refers that the phenomenon was perceptible in an almost general way throughout the Mexican Republic, since increases in this indicator were detected in 31 of 32 states, the states with the highest increases being Chiapas, Tabasco and Oaxaca, with 12.7, 10.1 and 9.6 percentage points, respectively.

To prepare its report, Coneval used data from the 2020 Population and Housing Census, collected by the National Institute of Statistics and Geography (Inegi) at the beginning of last year, which is why it explains that the results are prior to the arrival of the pandemic in Mexico.

The period of increase in sanitary deficiencies coincides with the start-up of the Health Institute for Well-being (Insabi) in January 2020, created by the government of Andrés Manuel López Obrador to replace the Seguro Popular. As it was said at the time, the purpose of this change was to offer “medical care and medicines free of charge and without restrictions for its beneficiaries.”

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From the beginning of its operations, the Insabi generated chaos, as patients of the defunct Seguro Popular claimed that due to a lack of guidelines and operating rules they had to pay for services that were previously free. Later the Institute, and in particular its director Juan Antonio Ferrer, was identified as responsible for the shortage of medicines in the country, from the most basic to highly specialized, such as cancer drugs for children with cancer.

El Sol de México published last May that Insabi, after making a diagnosis, decided to suspend the conclusion of 149 of 327 public health centers in 19 entities of the country, which meant that 45 percent of the works were suspended without giving more details about the decision.

Added to this situation were warnings from figures such as Carlos Urzúa, former Secretary of the Treasury, and from various members of the opposition who agreed that Insabi lacked regulatory, financial and operational support.

According to data from Coneval, between 2000 and 2015 Mexico made important advances in health coverage for the population, reducing the lack of this type of services from 58.6 percent to 16.7 percent of Mexicans. However, the downward trend was reversed in the agency’s most recent measurement for 2020.


The institution directed by José Nabor Cruz reports that in the last 30 years there has been “an improvement in all the social indicators estimated both at the national level and by federal entities”, that is, in those referring to educational lag, as well as quality, basic spaces and services inside the house.

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For example, between 1990 and 2020 there was a nationwide decrease in the percentage of the population with educational backwardness, going from 26.6 to 17.3 percent, a difference of 9.3 points.

The aspect that achieved the greatest decrease was that of the population in housing shortages due to overcrowding. In the last 30 years it presented the greatest decrease with 20.4 percentage points, going from 28.7 to 8.3 percent.

Regarding the population living in houses with floors, ceilings or walls made of poor quality materials, the reductions were 17.6, 11.4 and 6.1 percentage points, respectively.




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