MEDICINE IN MEXICO: Prehispanic, Institutional, Alternative

August  TBA, 2023


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For traditional and alternative healthcare practitioners and students interested in learning about medical practices in Mexico, including prehispanic and current institutional and alternative practices, as well as those looking for better understanding with hispanic populations and who are interested in health issues and terminology.

This 2-week program is meant for all those who work in healthcare: nurses and family doctors, alternative healthcare practitioners, as well as specialists and midwives. You will learn about the healthcare system in Mexico and about the way workers are organized. We will talk about social and cultural issues like health and human rights, health and spirituality, cultural beliefs about health, indigenous beliefs and practices, birth control methods, working with contagious illnesses, speaking with Latino patients, talking about domestic violence, the place of elderly or handicapped people in our society, among other issues.

Every week focuses on a special theme: traditional, institutional and alternative healthcare. You can subscribe one or two weeks of the program, depending to your needs and interests. We highly recommend to take the two weeks so you improve your Spanish and have a deep understanding of the healthcare system. You can also stay longer.


Daily intensive Spanish language instruction, 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m., Monday to Friday. Students are evaluated and place at the appropriate level with a maximum of five students in each class.

Traditional healthcare

Focuses on Prehispanic Health traditions, including: herbalists, Temazcal, midwives, healers and shamans.

  • Visits to a healer, to the Ethnobotanical Garden, and to Tepoztlán to gather herbs and plants.

Institutional Healthcare

Focuses on topics such as public and private healthcare in Mexico and its costs for the government and families, healthcare labor organizations, medical terminology and AIDS prevention, among others.

  • Meetings with doctors, nurses and/or health commission officials. Visits to a public and a private hospital, a medical dispensary. a rural clinic and a medical school.
  • Observation and/or participation in a healthcare center or clinic.

Alternative Healthcare

Focuses on issues like plants, acupuncture, acupressure, flexotherapy and holistic health.

  • Visits to the Centro de Salud de Flores Magón, Casa de la Mujer Malintzin and / or a nursing school.

Weekend Excursions


All CILAC Freire families are gay and lesbian friendly. Sharing with a Mexican family provides a vibrant sense of the Mexican people and makes the course even more personal and more meaningful. It also provides participants with ample opportunity to practice Spanish in everyday situations.


The cost is $ 1,438 US dollars and includes full room and board with a Mexican family, two weeks of intensive Spanish instruction, educational material, cultural activities, local excursions in the Cuernavaca area and one weekend excursion. Cost does not include round trip airfare to Mexico City, nor transportation from and to the Mexico City airport. A $ 110 deposit is due at the time of application (this is included in the total program cost). Childcare is available at a minimal extra cost.

For more information on "Medicine in Mexico", please contact us: