About us

Dr. Santiago Hernandez Medical Director and Owner of Chapala Med

Dr. Hernandez considers himself a native of Chicago although he was born in the state of Michoacan Mexico. Having lived in the Chicagoland area for more than 30 years his ability to communicate equally well in both English and Spanish sets him apart from other physicians who may speak English as their second language. His years of training in the U.S. make him exceptionally familiar with the U.S. healthcare system and those standards of care have allowed him to develop not only a solid knowledge base but also a keen sense and intuition of what the needs and expectations of American & Canadian patients may be.

Dr. Hernandez is a native of Chicago having grown up there since the age of 2 when his family emigrated from the state of Michoacan, Mexico. He attended Indiana University where he received his B.A. in Spanish and Biology. Having lived in the Chicagoland area for more than 30 years, makes him a unique and effective communicator and healthcare provider in both English and in Spanish. Receiving his medical training in Mexico and in the U.S., no language or cultural barriers exist while patients are under his care in the Chapala Lakeside or in the event of hospitalization in Guadalajara. His years of training as a medical interpreter and 4 years in Family Medicine makes him exceptionally familiar with the standards of care in the U.S. healthcare system without losing sight of the care and compassion that has come to be recognized of the healthcare system in Mexico. Dr. Hernandez, being an EXPAT himself, has solid knowledge base, a keen sense and intuition of the needs and expectations of the AMERICAN & CANADIAN Expat community of Jalisco when it comes to their healthcare needs. These personal and professional assets have positioned Chapala Med as the GO-TO practice for EXPATS living in the Chapala Lakeside & Guadalajara.

Providing healthcare access to those who cannot afford it is one of the ways Dr. Hernandez gives back to the community. Currently Dr. Hernandez is an active member of the ROTARY CLUB of Ajijic and provides free healthcare to members of the TEPEHUA community in Chapala Jalisco as well as to 105 students that are in the PATHWAYS SCHOOL SPONSORSHIP PROGRAM (part of OPERATION FEED).

During his free time Dr. Hernandez enjoys partaking in fitness activities, running, photography, tango dancing, cinema and organizing networking events for the local EXPAT communities of Chapala & Guadalajara.

Training & Experience

  • AAFP (American Academy of Family Physicians)

    Current member since 2012

  • Second Post-Graduate

    Family Medicine Externship

    at Mannheim Medical Franklin Park, Il . Aug. 2010 Nov. 2012

  • First Post-Graduate

    Family Medicine Externship

    at Aurora Medical Clinic Aurora, Il. March 2008 – July 2010

  • Medispa Physician

    Medical physician for Steiner Leisure aboard luxury cruise liner. Facial rejuvenation specialist. Trained and certified by Dr. Brad Herman at Miami Plastic Surgery in the use of Botox Cosmetic and Hylauranic acid dermal fillers. – May 2008 – September 2008

  • ECFMG (Educational College of Foreign Medical Graduates)

    U.S. Board Certification – 2007

  • Medical & Legal Interpreter

    Certified by Joint Commission to provide Spanish Medical & Legal interpretation primarily in various clinical settings around the Chicagoland area. – 2005-2007

  • Mexican Licensure (Titulo & Cedula Profesional)


  • Universidad Autonoma de Guadalajara – Medico Cirujano (Medical Doctor & Surgeon)

    1997- 2002

  • Indiana University, Bloomington In.

    Premedical Studies. Bachelor’s in Spanish & Biology. 1990-1995



Medical Records Release Form will be used if Chapala Med is coordinating your care or referring you to another physician who may need access to your medical records.

  • Mission

    To combine knowledge, resources, relationships, and creativity to help each one of our patients accomplish his/her life goals in an optimum state of health and well-being.

  • Vision

    If you’re like most people, your primary care doctor is your most important source of health care.