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How to Become an International Patient


If you are interested in becoming an international patient, you can contact us via:

  • Email:
  • Phone: 001-619-471-0234
  • Mail:
    International Services
    UC San Diego Medical Center
    200 West Arbor Drive, # 8222
    San Diego, CA 92103-8222

Note: To expedite your inquiry, please provide us with detailed information about your medical condition. If a physician is referring you to UC San Diego Health, he or she may provide information on your condition through our secure online form.

  1. Send Medical Records
    Send complete and current medical records to UC San Diego Health International Services, including copies of any relevant radiology scans and test results.
  2. Obtain Medical Acceptance
    A UC San Diego physician may review your medical history. If treatment is recommended preliminary treatment options may be determined.
  3. Obtain Financial Clearance
    You will need to provide either a deposit of estimated charges in advance or your insurance company must provide an authorization approved by UC San Diego that guarantees payment. Insurance authorizations can only be accepted for consideration by insurance companies with verified contracts with UC San Diego Health. See: Paying for Your Care.
  4. Schedule an Appointment
    An international patient coordinator will help you schedule an appointment at a convenient time with the most appropriate UC San Diego physician. Your coordinator will help you complete all the necessary forms for appointment scheduling and registration. View a complete list of UC San Diego Health physicians.

We will remain at your service from the moment you contact us and throughout your stay to coordinate any medical, financial, or service-related needs or inquiries that need to be addressed.

Ambassador Program

In addition to contacting us directly, you can contact us through one of our international ambassadors. These ambassadors provide prospective patients with a local contact who can communicate in their native language and discuss the possibility of coming to UC San Diego Health for care.

If you do not see your country listed, this means that we do not yet have an ambassador for that country. In this case, please contact our office directly.

Middle East

Nada Suhail

Dr. Nada Suhail 
After obtaining her medical degree at the University of Baghdad in 1990 and completing residency, Dr. Nada Suhail practiced as an anesthesiologist in Baghdad, Iraq and in Amman, Jordan until 2008. After several years of experience on the clinical side of medicine, Dr. Suhail joined the University of California San Diego’s International Patient Program, where she supervises the coordination of medical care for international patients at UC San Diego Health. Due to her upbringing in Iraq, Arabic language proficiency, and extensive practice of medicine in the Middle East, she is the best at knowing what the cultural needs are for Middle Eastern patients. Dr. Suhail, along with her team, will help bridge any cultural gaps while you are receiving your treatment at UC San Diego Health. Dr. Suhail should be your first point of contact if you would like to become a patient or are a health provider referring a patient.  
Telephone: + 619-756-1613
Fax: + 619-543-5282

Naif Alsantil

Naif Alsantli, MBA, MHA
Senior Consultant
Languages: English, Arabic

Mr. Alsantli supports the development of the strategic direction of our Middle East enterprise.  This includes identifying potential opportunities and partnerships in educational and patient-related activities. He also maintains the relationship with the referring sources back in the Middle East.

Mexico and Latin America

Sara Askenazi Santerbás

Sara Askenazi Santerbás
Sara Askenazi, the ambassador representing UC San Diego Health in Mexico City and Latin America, has 8 years of experience working with such health organizations as the ABC Medical Center (Centro Médico ABC, also known as the Hospital American British Cowdray), the Spanish Hospital of Mexico (Hospital Español), the Living with Crohn’s and Ulcerative Colitis Foundation (Fundación Vivir con Crohn y CUCI), AMSALUD , as well as the Nascere and OSE health clinics. A psychotherapist with expertise in individual and group psychotherapy with specialization in chronic degenerative diseases, hypnotherapy, psycho-nutrition, psychosocial dysfunction, and other psychiatric disorders, she received her master’s degree in clinical and health psychology from the Superior Institute of Psychological Studies (Instituto Superior de Estudios Psicológicos, or ‘ISEP’) in Barcelona, Spain, and also holds higher education degrees from the Anahuac University of Mexico (Universidad Anáhuac México), the Mexican Institute of Psycho-Oncology (Instituto Mexicano de Psicooncología, o ‘IMPo’), and the Institute for the Psychology of Eating. Ms. Askenazi speaks Spanish, English and Hebrew.