Friday, September 20, 2013



Dr Carlos Rubio is more than an excellent dentist----he is a visionary builder who has attracted a large team of specialist to join him in a bold new concept of efficient dental treatment.  Here's a quick glimpse: (phone from US 928-255-0897 or 928-257-4594)
A broken tooth sent me down to Yuma recently and I got a fresh appreciation of Rubio's bright new Idea.
The main office---one of 4 large buildings his team operates in. The full spectrum of dental services--from simple cleanings to surgery, crowns, root canals etc. 
 You will see his Billboard en route west from Yuma toward Algodones, Mexico.
And here's the doctor focusing on me.  I have asked a near-impossible thing---I want ALL my teeth back---even the ones carelessly lost in childhood.  He is well on the way to accomplishing this through implants. (his specialty) 
He knows that I appreciate high tech dentistry and gives me a tour of his newest facility.
He stands in front of a "miracle machine" that automatically carves your new crown from digitized data from photographs of your tooth.  All this on the same day you come in.   
I forget what this machine does---but it's also state of the art.
This is the super new material that crowns are carved from. 
Meet Dr Denisse who installed my new crown. 
 And there it is--the middle one.
She consents to a touristy photo.
On a separate matter, I get Dr Ernesto Montoya--head dentist for crowns etc---to check me out.

This is a very expensive machine that gives precise information on bone density and thickness---all very necessary for implants.  Few dentist in America have one.
The readout is very good news for me--in two months I will be ready for my next implant.
Dr Rubio walks me around to several work stations where his team is doing the work on site.  Other dental offices have to send out to separate labs.
I think this is their computer specialist.
These three friendly people man the front desk--speak good English and manage all the clerical details. 
RANDY PHILOSOPHIZES:  Empires are born from a single persons vision---and often in unlikely places.   The biggest political empire began in the remotes of Mongolia with the personality of Genghis Khan.  The greatest economic empire began in the remotes of Arkansas with the personality of Sam Walton. The world is sorely in need of a dental empire--because billions of people are suffering from dental neglect.
Most Americans cannot afford proper care because the American Dental Association obstructs any real progress.  Help, of necessity. must come from outside. Perhaps from Algodones, Mexico.
  Rubio and his associates have invented a pattern of efficiency not so different from Wal-Mart---in that they seek to keep prices low and give careful attention to every aspect of the business.
Already his clinic is by far the largest in a town of hundreds of dentist.  I hope that it grows and grows--and replicates itself all along the border---till millions of us have a shot at affordable dentistry.  You can send a message to the overpriced dentist of America by making a run for the border as I do. 



Michael said...

In the US healthcare has become almost completely corrupt.

Time Magazine Cover Story, The Bitter Pill, Why Medical Bills are Killing Us by Steven Brill - Founder Court TV and American Lawyer Magazine

March 4th, 2013

One acetaminophen tablet costs 1.5¢. Your hospital marks it up 10,000%

To understand why U.S. health care spending is out of control, you just have to follow the money. This in-depth investigation of billing practices reveals that hospitals—and the executives who run them—are gaming the system to maximize revenue and sticking patients with bills that have little relationship to the care that's provided. The free market in American medicine is a myth, with or without Obamacare.

Nonprofit Profitmakers

To the extent that they defend the chargemaster rates at all, the defense that hospital executives offer has to do with charity. As John Gunn, chief operating officer of Sloan Kettering, puts it, "We charge those rates so that when we get paid by a [wealthy] uninsured person from overseas, it allows us to serve the poor."

A closer look at hospital finance suggests two holes in that argument. First, while Sloan-Kettering does have an aggressive financial-assistance program (something Stamford Hospital lacks), at most hospitals it's not a Saudi sheik but the almost poor—those who don't qualify for Medicaid and don't have insurance—who are most often asked to pay those exorbitant chargemaster prices. Second, there is a jaw-dropping difference those list prices and the hospital's costs, which enables these ostensibly nonprofit institutions to produce high profits even after all the discounts. True, when the discounts to Medicare and private insurers are applied, hospitals end up being paid a lot less overall than what is itemized on the original bills. Stamford ends up receiving about 35% of what it bills, which is the yield for most hospitals. (Sloan-Kettering and MD Anderson, whose great brand names make them tough negotiators with insurance companies get about 50%.

However, no matter how steep the discounts, the chargemaster prices are so high and so devoid on any calculation related to cost that the result is uniquely American: thousands of nonprofit institutions have morphed into high-profit, high-profile businesses that have the best of both worlds. They have become entities akin to low-risk, must-have public utilities that nonetheless pay their operators as if they were high-risk entrepreneurs. As with the local electric company, customers must have the product and can't go elsewhere to buy it. They are steered to a hospital by their insurance companies or doctors (whose practices may have a business alliance with the hospital or even be owned by it) Or they end up there because isn't any local competition. But unlike with the electric company, no regulator caps hospital profits. Yet hospitals are also beloved local charities.

Michael said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
The Bright's said...

Thanks for this. We had dental work done in Mexico and were pleased, but this place looks a lot more high tech. We will be going!

Bon vivant said...

Nice place. Wait, is Hector there working on a bath towel? Where are the scrubs I usually see at my Dallas dentist's office?? And that counter, is that a counter or the floor? Looks like floor tiles on the counter? Hey, Jesus, better get that text from your seeestor!

Just teasing! I'd try them if they were closer to my home.

Linda Sand said...

I'd like to go there for my dental care but Dave does not want me to cross into Mexico and I don't like to upset him. So, next week we'll overpay the local clinic to clean my teeth. But, I'm keeping this blog to help me persuade Dave to change his mind. Thanks for posting it.

nimba100 said...

Interesting!!! What is the cost to do the implants?
Randall Garnett

Shadowmoss said...

I will be heading to Algodones next month for dental work. I had a recommendation for a dentist from a co-worker, but I like the look of this place better. My last dentist was down in Honduras, and I liked his work better than any I've had done in the US. If I have any alternative I will not go to a US dentist again.

Randall Sanderson said...

I've been going to Dr Rubio for over 15 years. I live in Phoenix and it's worth the drive down. They have always been kind and knowledgeable. My first digital x-rays were done there; long before the local dentist had them. You can see their diploma's on the wall where they took training in the US. I recommend them to everyone. I'm glad you found them and took the space on your blog to highlight them.

Randy in Phoenix

MsBelinda said...

Thanks for this post I too live along the border, Del Rio, Texas with Ciudad Acuna, Coahuila.

Not having insurance I have my dental work done there at more affordable prices than I could possibly find in the States.

Was going to let one of my readers know since she is heading in that direction but I see she found your post on her own.

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dr.dave said...

I basically support the idea of the ACA or Obamacare, but a single payer system ala Canada or the UK is what I'd really like to see. I'm a UK citizen and will never give that up, as long as I live. While Obamacare is better than the present system for the vast majority of us, here is a US based alternative to ridiculous traditional surgery costs. This is a group of surgeons in Oklahoma who got tired of dealing with insurance companies, tired of dealing with bureaucratic overcharging and nonsense at regular hospitals and set up a surgery center with transparent system of fee for service. The fee you see is the fee you pay.

You may think these prices are still high, but recall that you are getting surgery, and I assure you, fees for the same procedures at traditional hospitals are 50 to 100% higher. Much of that cost is hidden from the patient, but we all end up paying for it.

Randy said...

Thank you Dr. Dave for your thoughtful response. I agree that what the US really needs is a single payer system and that Obama care is only somewhat better than the current system. I checked out your website and Like your straightforward fee-for-service approach.
I know that you are burdened with an expensive overhead of malpractice insurance that Rubio's group doesn't have to pay.
You may have seen the recent Nightline series about offshore medical treatment attracting Americans with good service at much reduced cost.

Anonymous said...

India has a similar system for healthcare:

BlakemoreBaylor said...

Excellent Piece of information, Thanks for sharing.

Christopherross said...

Interesting post on Dental implants.

DaviannaDavis said...

Thanks for good post.