Medicine and health care in Hong Kong: medical services for foreigners, traditional Chinese medicine

Hong Kong


Medicine and health care in Hong Kong: medical services for foreigners, traditional Chinese medicine

Hong Kong tops the rankings for regions with the longest life expectancy. What is the secret of the lifespan of Hongkongers? The credit goes primarily to well-developed healthcare, high-quality medical service delivery, and a high level of sanitary and educational work with the population. And the development and use of modern medical equipment attract many foreigners to the region to try out the latest technology during treatment.

Specific features of the healthcare sector in Hong Kong

Healthcare in Hong Kong is presented in three types:

primary (general practice);

secondary (therapeutic and preventive);

tertiary (chronic diseases with hospitalization).

The provision of all types of medical services is available precisely in public clinics, as private facilities usually only cover primary and specialized care. Thus, for serious matters such as surgery or childbirth, Hong Kong residents usually choose public hospitals.

Most doctors in private clinics are local, and treatment by foreign specialists will be much more expensive. Public medicine for Hong Kong citizens is generally almost free. Finally, services are subsidized to provide medical care to vulnerable populations. Treatment for venereal diseases and tuberculosis and preventive treatments will be completely free. Antenatal and postnatal care programs and vaccinations for children cost nothing for women in Hong Kong.

Medical services for foreigners in Hong Kong

Foreigners in Hong Kong can use public hospitals, but without special discounts. However, in this case, the cost of treatment will not differ much from the prices in private clinics. In addition, private institutions often undertake to pay extra for medicines and tests. Although foreign employees can partially compensate expenses at the employer's expense if this is provided for in the employment contract. A pleasant bonus for foreigners staying in Hong Kong hospitals will be easy communication with medical staff. After all, many doctors have studied at Western universities, so they are fluent in English.

Application of modern technology in medicine

With the help of biotechnology, tissue engineering, robotic surgery, DNA diagnostics, etc. are being actively introduced into Hong Kong medicine. And innovative technologies are helping the region in the fight against coronavirus. For example, a robot has been deployed to disinfect public transport during the pandemic in Hong Kong to destroy bacteria in hard-to-reach places.

The Hong Kong government is actively promoting the development of medical technology through special funding programs. For example, funds are allocated for research projects in bioinformatics, pharmaceuticals, molecular diagnostics, etc. The Biomedical Technology Support Centre also operates at the Hong Kong Science Park.

Traditional Chinese Medicine

Hong Kong is a meeting place of Eastern and Western traditions. Therefore, alongside European treatments, many specialists put traditional Chinese medicine into practice. The use of medicines proven by thousands of years of practice is not considered alternative medicine here, so many products are made from animal and plant-based ingredients. For example, teas and tinctures made from medicinal herbs and roots are popular among Hong Kongers. The region is also home to many medical centers specializing in Chinese medicine. Some of them combine this with modern medical innovations.