Friday, January 20, 2012

First doctors appointment in Cuenca

I ran out of one of my medications five weeks ago that I didn't count as being critical to my health at the time. So, I went to a pharmacy to see about getting it like I did with another medication, but it was going to cost over $80 for 28 pills. After hearing that I decided that I was going to make an appointment get my levels checked and see what other medications Cuenca has to offer.

Five weeks later and I finally made an appointment to see Dr. Anthony Guillen who I had heard that he spoke English, because we got his number when we first got her for Nick, but then never met him. I also referred some friends to him, and they loved him so it was finally my turn. On Tuesday I got the chance to meet him. He speaks English as clear as an American, so there are any misunderstandings, he is funny, and young. Dr. Guillen and I had a very through conversation about my problem. He took my vitals, listened to my lungs and heart. We decided that I needed to have my labs done, but I wasn't symptomatic. I asked if he knew how much they would cost he excused himself and came back to tell me $60. "$60 oh", I said. I really was thinking how that was a lot more then what I anticipated and I had only brought $60 with me. I rarely ever carry money. I asked how much his fee would be and he told me normally $20 but he would charge me $15 today. I told him I only has $60 and he said that I could pay him on Wednesday when I come back to review my labs.

Across the hall I went to have my blood drawn. Dr. Banegas (sp?) was a very pleasant man and spoke only a few words in english. He started looking for a good vein, but I had been fasting in anticipation of having labs drawn and they were a little hard to find. He finally decided on one and by that point in my medical opinion the tourniquet had been on longer then needed. He stuck me and on the first try he was successful and I was grateful. He didn't use the typical vacutainner or syring to take my blood he stuck a needle in my vein and let it drip into the tube. Don't worry it feels the same it was just odd to me. I've only drawn blood like that on a newborn infant. When I was done he asked me for the money which now was $65. I told him I only had $60 and I would pay him the $5 tomorrow. I am not sure what changed why I had to pay $65 not $60 maybe there was any extra lab he wasn't aware of. I think there was a total of 6 tests performed. I was told to come back Wednesday at 9am.

Wednesday morning I was at Dr. Guillens office a 8:50 and he was there waiting for me. He asked me to go to the lab to get my results, so I went across the hall paid an additional $5 that I owed the lab. Then went accross the hall to speak with Dr Guillen. I told him about my concern of the costs of the labs he explained that 2 of the tests I had were usually $20 tests and that he would talk to Dr. Banegas, because he thought the cost was a little high, but he was a new lab doctor there, so he wasn't sure. My results were elevated and it was nessecary to go back on my medication. I explained to him about the cost and asked if there were any lower cost medications. We talked he went downstairs to the pharmacy and spoke with them and came back with some options. I paid Dr Guillen $15 and no more I thought I would have an additional fee from review the labs but nope not required. We decided on one and off I went with perscription and told to call if I had any concerns and to come back in six months to have labs re-checked.

My overall opinion is that it was good care and I will go back to see Dr. Guillen and I will have him see my family also. Dr. Anthony Guillen is located on Av. Remigio Crespo and Las Americas upstairs from the Farmacia Salvador (that his parents own) it is the red and white pharmacy on the round about. His number is 095 398 105 you must call for an appointment.

The medication cost was $19.50 for 10 pills. So I will end up paying almost $60 for 30 pills.


  1. Glad you got to see Dr. Anthony.. we like him alot as well. And his parents are very nice and helpful. Hope this new med. helps.

  2. I don't know where you purchased your meds, but there is a clinic just across the street from the Bank of Guayaquil on Mariscal Sucre, about about a block and a half or so east of Parque Calderon, where my hypertension meds are approx 35-40% less than at the large chain drugstore(s).