1 May, 2011 @ 09:36
2 mins read

Putting SimpleCare to the test

simplecare health schemes

The Olive Press’ Commercial Director Dale Nottingham tries out an affordable private health scheme

LIVING and working in Spain is, for me, a truly enriching experience.

Absorbing the culture, making new friends and above all, grappling with the language, have all provided memorable milestones along a wonderful voyage of discovery and personal fulfillment.

Except, that is when it came to my health. Ordering meatballs and getting pork chops is one thing, but when you’re sitting in front of a doctor trying to describe the symptoms of a serious illness, you need to know that the physician in front of you understands precisely what you are telling him.

You also want to be sure that your doctor knows what he is doing. This may sound a facile point but when you have lived overseas for as long as I have – in Thailand, Vietnam and China for the last 15 years – this is not something you take for granted.

And so it was that after a seeming eternity of indestructibly rude health, I recently fell ill with a urological infection.

This was also around the time I made the acquaintance of Dr Raymond Prats of SimpleCare.

Through the course of our (unrelated) discussions, the issue of my health problem came up.

What I need is to be able receive excellent healthcare without losing the shirt off my back

Having listened to my concerns about finding a doctor who could understand me and who I could trust, Dr Prats suggested I give SimpleCare a try.

So I did.

And I can honestly tell you it was one of the best decisions I have made in
a long while.

The way it works is very simple. First you become a member of SimpleCare, which you can do online in a matter of minutes. Within a few days, you will receive your membership card. It doesn’t matter if you have had a previous condition; they take everybody.


Being a SimpleCare member brings you two major benefits.

First it gives you access to the best specialists and doctors in the private health sector. The peace of mind you get, knowing that your health is in qualified, capable hands
is immeasurable.

The second benefit – and this is really important  when you consider that health-care costs can often be prohibitive when you “go private” – is that being a SimpleCare member qualifies you for huge savings on you medical bills.

SimpleCare can do this because, as a large US based company, they are able to leverage the prices usually only available to the big insurance companies.

When I paid my bill, out of curiosity, I asked the lady behind the desk how much
it would have cost me if I hadn’t used my SimpleCare card. Amazingly, the price of my consultation and treatment would have been almost double.

As for the doctor; I can say with hand on heart that Dr Sanz, the chief urologist in the Clinica Premium in Marbella – recommended as the best urologist in the South of Spain by SimpleCare – was consummately professional, sympathetic, attentive and – not least, bilingual.

Indeed, even the nurses at the reception desk spoke pretty good English. The whole experience was very reassuring.

In summary; I don’t speak great Spanish and I am not certainly not familiar enough
with the Spanish public healthcare system to navigate the maze of its variable quality. What I need is to be able receive excellent healthcare without losing the
shirt off my back.

SimpleCare has enabled me to do that. And the peace of mind that brings is truly priceless.

Karl Smallman

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  1. Our family would like to take this opportunity to confirm our similar experience with SimpleCare. Our mother’s experience with her total knee replacement was successful and free of any complications. “Santa Elena Hospital was excellent in looking after all our needs, I can’t thank enough our surgeon Mr Neuhaus and the nurses in making my mother as comfortable as possible. You made us feel important and always considered our needs a priority and helped us save no less than 60% on all our medical cost with your health plan; I will be recommending SimpleCare to all our friends and family.

  2. My first contact with Simplecare was with Dr. Prats who then organized all my procedures with Dr. Alf Neuhaus and Dr. Sierra for three procedures on my back and spine.

    We were collected at Malaga and proceeded to accommodation which Simplecare provided for both myself and my wife, the next day we were taken to the excellent Santa Elena Hospital where all pre op tests were done and the surgery was done in the afternoon, I was discharged from the clinic two days later by which all pain in my leg was gone, we then went back to resort for post operative treatment where each day we were visited by Dr.Prats and Dr. Neuhaus and to see how I was recuperating. Simplecare also sent a Physiotherapist who was very good and patient, my recovery is ongoing and I am now enjoying my new found mobility.

    I have saved about 60% of the cost of my procedures and also the hospitality and expertise of the surgeons and their staff, I cannot thank them enough.

    I would recommend Simplecare and their excellent and professional surgeons for any medical procedures necessary.
    Best Regards

    P. Kilcourse
    Alicante, Espana
    March 2011

  3. “I have found the entire experience at SimpleCare to be a unique combination of exceptional quality and affordable health care. The physicians at Santa Elena Hospital are well trained, with superior diagnostic skills, and the staff is warm and congenial and ready to help with translating if needed. Before joining Simplecare I was paying 120 euros for my orthopeadic consultations, now I only pay excess of 28 euros! I highly recommend SimpleCare if you are looking for private affordable health care.”

  4. I joined SimpleCare back in Sept 2010 because of health problems, I needed to see a neurologist and started seeing Dr Marmol at Santa Elena Hospital, I found her to be very understanding and qualified but best of all I was saving 90 euros on each consultation. I would highly recommend SimpleCare and the Hospitals and Clinics they use as there provider network are to a very high standard especially Santa Elena Hospital.

    Mark R.

  5. I would also like to praise them, they are by far and away the best, most professional company I have dealt with in my 28 years here in Spain and I would continue and will continue to recommend them to everyone… the only down side is I didnt think of the concept myself lol :)

  6. Since joining SimpleCare my medical expenses have been reduced by one third. I first contacted SimpleCare in February 2010 after my Oncologist at a well known Marbella Hospital advised me that I needed a round of chemotherapy and a surgical procedure. The cost for the chemotherapy was going to be 22,000€ not including the surgical fees, I was already paying 130 euros for each private consultation and that was a burden already but I was even less keen for the chemotherapy cost involved. My chemotherapy fee through SimpleCare dropped to 2200€, my subsequent specialist fees with the Oncologist at Hospital Santa Elena were now 27.89€ and all the lab test and scans were reduced by almost 70%. The only word you need when your ill is SimpleCare, English speaking help and huge money savings make you feel you can cope, not to mention the excellent Hospitals and doctors they have access to, I know I use SimpleCare.

    Anthea Clark,
    Estepona, Spain

  7. I would thoroughly recommend the services provided by SimpleCare and the fantastic care and treatment I have received by everyone at Clinica Santa Elena, especially Dr Seara. Dr Prats (SimpleCare)was very helpful in setting up my membership and his follow up procedures to ensure everything went smoothly, both before and after the operation.

    I had a pre existing condition, so had great difficulty in getting the relevant insurance cover I needed. Then I discovered SimpleCare, and all my concerns were alleviated. I paid the membership fee and then was able to proceed immediately with the treatment I needed. Within days I had the operation planned, and afterwards on leaving the Clinica I had a very pleasant surprise to discover just how much I had saved on the course of treatment by using SimpleCare.

    What a great idea and peace of mind that you only pay for the treatment when you need it (other than the membership fee), so avoiding expensive annual fees, and so because of the whole experience, I would highly recommend them.

    Dave Button
    Fuente de Piedra.

  8. An acquaintance of mine was asked to join this scheme as a practitioner. The gist of it seemed to be Simplecare would only pay about a quarter of the practitioners normal fee, “Take Simplecare’s patients and get paid a lot less”. Great for the patient but what is the upside for the medical professional? None whatsoever. It cannot last.

  9. Having used Clinica Rincon for years after arriving here in Spain, my mother and I saw no reason not to go back to them when she was suffering with strange numbing and tingling sensations in her hands and feet. We had had a couple of not so good experiences with some of there doctors, but we were desperate and went to the Rincon de La Vicotoria clinic, were after consultation with the Internal Medicine specialist she was sent home with vitamins and told to take them 3 times a day and soon she would be feeling fine. She ended up having what could have been a life threatening illness “Guillain Barre” culminating in a 10 day hospital stay in Santa Elena. This was a gross miss diagnosis by the specialist in Rincon and had it not been us calling Simple Care, we would have not been able to get her the right treatment and help her on the way to recovery, not to mention the three thousand euros we saved using their health scheme. We will be looking to take action against Rincon for gross negligence and warn others to be careful were one seeks medical care here on the coast.

  10. After arriving in Spain two years ago I needed to see a Gynecologist and was paying 120 euros for each consultation, after my third visit in five months I knew I could not continue paying these fees and started looking for insurance but because of my current problems were considered pre existing conditions non would insure me. Thats when I found SimpleCare and was much relieved when not only they accepted me but reduced my specialist fees to only 28 euros. Now I see my ginecologist recommended by SimpleCare in Hospital Quiron four times a year for what it was costing me for one visit! Thank you to Simple Care for all there help. I would certainly continue to use them and recommend them to all my friends.

  11. Ivan, your comments do notconfirm the facts. Simplecare is growing rapidly!More & more hospitals are signing up to join, as are patients. Not only do you receive very personal help from Dr, Prats to find the medical assistance you require, the surgeons & staff involved in my own medical problem at Santa Elena gave me the same wonderful treatment as a patient paying much more who did not have the advantage of Simplecare membership. More power to their elbow!!

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