Costa Rica’s Healthcare System

The High Quality of Costa Rica’s Healthcare System.

Costa Rica is one of the most advanced countries in the Western Hemisphere and has garnered a considerable reputation for its incredible scenery, education, and modern living. However, one aspect that may come as a surprise to some is the very high quality of Costa Rica’s healthcare system.

A survey conducted by the World Health Organization (WHO) in 2000 demonstrated that Costa Rica placed 36th out of 191 countries when it came to their healthcare system. This put Costa Rica in the top three in terms of Latin American countries and actually beat out the United States which came in 37th. While the survey may have leaned towards particular qualities in a healthcare system that not everyone shares, it did demonstrate that Costa Rica is very dedicated to providing the best healthcare possible for its residents

Costa Rica’s Private Healthcare System

The government of Costa Rica runs the 30 hospitals and 250 clinics and has done so for nearly 60 years. However, as with most nationalized systems, there have been some serious issues that have yet to be fully addressed.

-        Long Waiting Periods

-        Slow, Impersonal Service

-        Outdated Hospitals

However, a parallel system of private healthcare has grown outside the boundaries of the national system which is why Costa Rica is regarded so highly in terms of its healthcare. This rapidly growing private healthcare system is directed towards the Medical Tourism market that brings in thousands of patients each and every year.

Since the turn of the 21st century, Costa Rica has developed a powerful reputation for its cosmetic and dental surgery which is a fraction of the cost compared to the United States. Costa Rica has managed to develop this particular area of healthcare to appeal to those in the US who do not have the insurance coverage to receive these procedures. As a result, people come in virtually every day to have cosmetic and dental surgery performed at a very low cost with excellent results.

A Low Cost Cosmetic and Dental Surgery Alternative

Typically, a person who comes to Costa Rica to receive either cosmetic or dental surgery can save upwards of 40% to 80% on the procedure. Plus, there is a new rise in laparoscopic and orthopedic surgeries that are also quite inexpensive yet deliver the high quality results as found in the US.

Costa Rica has managed to capitalize on this current trend in healthcare based in part by attracting some of the best doctors, dentists, and surgeons in the hemisphere to set up their practice in the country. Plus, with the growing cost of insurance rates combined with decreasing benefits that US citizens are seeing on a daily basis, it is little wonder that more people are coming to Costa Rica to have the aforementioned treatments performed. In addition, Costa Rica is also seeing a growing number of patients from Canada and the UK thanks to the long waiting lines and rationing of healthcare as experienced in those countries.

For those who are interested in the growing medical tourism industry in Costa Rica, there are many opportunities for people to get the treatment they want at a fraction of the cost and without having to wait for months to receive it.

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