Learn About El Salvador Healthcare System & Medical Insurance Options for Expats
El Salvador is also known as the Land of Volcanoes. It is popular for its numerous natural attractions that include pristine beaches, lush landscapes, and a mild tropical climate. Many expats have made this small country of Central America their home. The healthcare system in El Salvador at present is not at par with most of the North American countries. It is why expats coming to the country must buy themselves a comprehensive international health insurance plan before their arrival. It will ensure that they can access emergency healthcare services in other neighboring countries that have better healthcare facilities.
For more details about the health information in El Salvador, visit the CDC.
Overview of Healthcare in El Salvador
El Salvador has struggled to keep up with its neighboring countries in terms of the healthcare system and medical facilities. At present, the country’s Ministry of Health and Social Welfare determines national health policy and reviews the functioning of the healthcare sector.
Over the last few years, this health department, popularly known as MSPAS, has taken extensive steps to reform the overall healthcare system. It will help improve the quality of life for people living in the country. While these new initiatives have made the country’s health system a lot better, it still has a lot of room for development.
It is also worth noting that the country also lags behind most of the countries in terms of water supply and sanitation facilities. Thus, the spreading of infections and viruses are common occurrences in the country. The recent reforms have taken steps to curb such issues. However, there is still a more substantial area that needs to be covered across the country.
The country’s healthcare system comprises the public healthcare sector and the private healthcare sector.
How the El Salvador Healthcare System Works for Expats?
Expats must know that most of the private clinics and hospitals are based in the major cities of El Salvador. If they are going to live elsewhere, they may have to either come to these cities or visit some other country to seek better treatment. While expenses of health services in El Salvador are lower than the western countries, expats must still get themselves the protection of international health insurance. One such plan can ensure that they can obtain top-notch medical assistance anywhere in the world.
Expats can expect to get all kinds of essential healthcare assistance in the major cities of El Salvador. However, for any severe illness or issue, they must use their health policy and seek treatment in other countries with better healthcare facilities. Basic health facilities are free for the local population. However, expats have to pay for any health service they obtain in any hospital, public or private, across the country.
Public Healthcare in El Salvador
El Salvador’s public healthcare system comprises 30 public hospitals across the country, in addition to several smaller facilities. Those who are covered by a health policy in the country can still obtain free essential health services in the public facilities, as provided by MSPAS. At present, just about 20% of people living in the country have health insurance, while 80% do not have it at all. The availability of limited facilities also means that most of the hospitals across the country are mostly heavily crowded and lack enough staff to support them.
Private Healthcare in El Salvador
Private facilities in El Salvador have better equipment than public hospitals. They have modern equipment and educated staff that can cater to several medical needs, such as pediatrics, gynecology, diagnostics, and more. Expats that are already living here visit these facilities for seeking health advice or treatment.
Emergency Services and Pharmacies in El Salvador
Emergency medical services in the country are well below the standard of all its neighboring countries. We advise expats to obtain contact details of their nearest hospitals to seek emergency medical assistance. They can also get more information about air evacuation under their insurance policy to find better treatment in another country.
Pharmacies in El Salvador may not have all kinds of medications available with them. That is why expats must carry all their essential and critical medicines with them before coming to the country.
Best Private International Medical Insurance Plans for Expats in El Salvador
El Salvador is a beautiful country that attracts numerous tourists and expats from around the world. All of them must, however, know about the ongoing virus fevers and other ailments in the country. They must secure their health by procuring international health insurance from a leading global health insurance company. Cigna Global is one of the popular insurance companies that currently offer health cover for expats visiting the country. You can also look for other local insurance plans and identify the best policy as per your need.