Health system in Paraguay: healthcare for tourists



Health system in Paraguay: healthcare for tourists

Paraguay is a country in Central South America, developing at a slow pace after wars and destruction. The country has a history, cultural heritage, fertile land, and rich nature.

The country's healthcare system is rather underdeveloped. Only in the capital and other major cities can you find more or less modern clinics. The rural areas are covered by medical services very poorly, qualified medical personnel can be found only in resort areas, where they work under contract with health centers of large hotels.

Peculiarities of the healthcare system

In Paraguay, medical facilities are divided into two categories: 

  • Public. Public hospitals are in short supply of medicines. There are also problems with doctors' equipment and facilities. Public institutions provide free medical care to people with health insurance and low-income citizens. There is a shortage of medical personnel. 
  • Private. Private clinics are represented by private doctors, whose qualifications cause some concern. The most qualified medical personnel can be found in popular tourist destinations, in such resort areas doctors work under contract with the medical centers of major hotels and hotels. About 20% of Paraguayans can afford private medical care.

The most modern clinics are located in Asuncion, the capital of Paraguay, as well as other large cities, but their equipment and personnel are not sufficient to provide the appropriate type of high-quality services. Remote areas, including rural areas, such as the inhabitants of large pastoral areas, are severely lacking in medical services. 

The social security system has not changed much since the middle of the last century. Insurance is financed by contributions from employers, a certain percentage of an employee's wages, and partly by the state. This law provides for free medical care, payments for sickness and rehabilitation after an accident, old-age pensions for citizens over 60 years of age, and payment for maternity care.

Due to the low level of economic development and geographic location, as well as the low availability of medicine, infectious diseases prevail in the country. 

Common infectious diseases in the country include: 

  • malaria;
  • measles;
  • venereal diseases;
  • influenza;
  • leprosy;
  • pulmonary tuberculosis.

Medical care for foreigners in Paraguay

Medical insurance is not required when entering the country but is strongly recommended. Note that most Paraguayan clinics provide medical services when paid in cash, without accepting international insurance policies, so medical insurance should not only be international but also allow you to reimburse personal expenses for treatment after returning from the country through the provision of appropriate checks. 

Medical care in Paraguay for foreigners is provided on a paid basis, except for emergency medical care, which is provided free of charge by state institutions in cases of life and health-threatening situations.

An inoculation certificate is not required upon entry into the country; in some cases (in the case of an outbreak), a certificate of vaccination against yellow fever is required for all travelers (except for children under 9 months) who intend to visit the western and eastern parts of Paraguay. 

Special precautions should be taken against hepatitis B, C, and D, typhoid, dengue fever, and some other common diseases. There are many stray dogs on the streets - avoid them or you risk catching something nasty. They usually won't bother you, but you should be careful. That said, Paraguay is at risk for two of the most common mosquito-borne tropical fevers: Dengue fever and yellow fever.