Features of obtaining medical insurance for a trip to El Salvador
El Salvador is the smallest country in Central Asia. Medicine in the country is not at a high level. Residents often suffer from chronic malnutrition and various associated diseases. There are unsanitary living conditions in cities. Despite this, life expectancy in the country is about 70 years. However, infant mortality is very common.
Only 50 state clinics and other health centres operate in this country. The capacity of these medical institutions is only 7,000 people. The main problems of medicine in the country are unemployment and underemployment of medical workers and a shortage of first aid specialists. Residents have great respect for doctors and they are very important to them. However, not all doctors work with evidence-based medicine. Many have nothing against folk methods of treatment, and some work according to this system.
If you are a foreigner, you can count on medical care in the country only if you have health insurance. For any health problem, it is better to go to private clinics, because there is a much higher quality of service and better equipment. For this, you must always have the original or a copy of the insurance policy with you. Some private clinics may not accept travel insurance and will require a cash advance payment. It is better to be prepared for this.
How to get insurance
You can take out an insurance policy online. After paying, you send the file with the policy to the insurance company by e-mail. This must be done immediately after payment. The contract will be certified by an electronic signature. This replaces the seal and signature of the insurance company. This insurance policy must be printed before the trip. You can do this at visa centres, migration, or consular services. When visiting any doctor or medical institution without insurance, you will be forced to pay a lot of money for services. Most clinics accept international credit cards, while doctors only accept cash. In order not to pay for it all out of your pocket, you should take out international health insurance. Such a policy can cover the costs of evacuation by plane in the event of an accident.
What to do when an insurance event occurs
To begin with, you need to calm down. It is necessary to call the company whose number is indicated in the policy and explain to the employee what happened, what the injuries are, and how you feel. Then, call an ambulance (132). Ambulances go out on a call to both local citizens and foreigners. Do not pay for any services immediately, this must be agreed upon with your insurance company. It is important, if you have insurance, not to go to medical facilities yourself, as you will have to pay for the services. Coordinate everything with your insurer.
Important emergency numbers:
• water rescue: 915;
• emergency medical assistance: 132;
• police: 911;
• fire department: 913
For free medical assistance, contact the local office of the International Committee of the Red Cross: +41 22 734 60 01.
Visa to El Salvador
To go to El Salvador, you need to open a visa. This does not apply to Russia and Ukraine. Citizens of these countries can stay on the territory of El Salvador for 90 days. Also, a visa is not required for those who have a valid visa in the USA, Canada or one of the Schengen countries.
When crossing the border, you need to present:
• migration card in English and Spanish, signed by you;
• tickets in two directions;
• a certificate of your financial situation.
To apply for a visa at the consulate, you must prepare the following documents:
- photocopy of passport pages with other visas;
- completed questionnaire in Spanish;
- photo (3.5x4.5);
- copies of two-way tickets.
Visa processing will take approximately 7 days. The entry visa is valid for 30 days. The consular fee for a one-time visa is $30, and for a multiple-entry visa - $60.
Children do not need a visa, they can be entered in their parents' passports.