Health care in Panama is among the best and the most affordable in Central America. Health insurance in Panama is essential for any expat. Some expats choose to self-insure their medical expenses. This is a valid option for those who are in good health and can afford it. If you don’t want to take such a risk, you’ll need to obtain health insurance in Panama.
Healthcare in Panama City is very good in public and private hospitals. Most larger hospitals are kept up to date with modern technology and procedures. It is quick and easy to get an appointment and doctors can fit patients into their schedule within a few days. Most medicines are cheap and available without a prescription.
Government Health Insurance
Health care in Panama is available to permanent residents and citizens; however the support that is provided is nominal and most Panamanians prefer private healthcare as it is so affordable, even by local standards. It is also possible to live in Panama without any insurance and to simply pay the full cost of any medical treatment.
Visitors that have entered through Tocumen Airport can access free healthcare insurance for their first thirty days in Panama.
The costs covered include those associated with:
- Diseases contracted in Panama
- Emergency dental treatment
Administrative legal assistance and costs linked to lost and stolen documents are also covered. Incidents connected to alcohol, drugs, negligence and extreme sports are not covered.
Private Hospital Memberships
Another good option available in Panama is the private hospital memberships These are discount programs which apply only to treatment received at that same facility. Costs are as low as $18.00 per month and include benefits such as 100% reimbursement for emergency room services, 70% reimbursement for diagnostic tests, and 50% reimbursement for routine screenings.