Mérida, Yucatán — The Supreme Court has instructed doctors, dentists, psychologists and nutritionists to accept credit and debit cards.
Medical professionals must have an electronic payment terminal in their offices, under the ruling.
Only three out of 10 private doctors in Yucatán have the credit card technology, according to estimates by the College of Physicians of Yucatán.
The purpose of this resolution, issued Jan. 10 in response to three separate lawsuits, is to help patients apply tax deductions payments for health services.
By majority vote, the SCJN determined that the requirement established in article 151, section I, of the Income Tax Law is constitutional and therefore its compliance is mandatory.
The current law during the years 2014, 2015 and 2016 facilitated the deduction of payments for medical, dental and hospital expenses, and in 2017 the magistrates added the benefit of deduction in psychology and nutrition consultations, provided they have a professional title.
The high court called on health professionals to formalize this service in their offices and meet their tax obligations. According to a study by the Mexican Association for the Study and Treatment of Pain, nationally only 20 percent of private physicians have a terminal, considering it “inconvenient and because the tax authorities have not offered information on collection with a card and the implications it has for the patient.”
In Mexico, several companies install such terminals, designed to be easy to use, and even issue summaries and sales reports. They can be managed through a smartphone app.