Healthcare in The Bahamas

 

 

The standard of healthcare in The Bahamas is considered to be outstanding, with qualified and highly-trained medical staff in well-equipped hospitals and healthcare facilities to attend to the needs of patients. The healthcare sector of the country is well developed, and the quality of general and specialist medical care provided by the state and private medical institutions are of high standards.

In general, the funding of the healthcare system in the country is handled by the Government of The Bahamas. Primary health care is free of charge to all civil servants, pregnant women, children, and people ages 60 years and above. Access to public health care services is also free of charge, regardless of one’s ability to pay. However, foreign nationals who are planning to reside in the Bahamas are recommended to take out private health insurance policy that will provide coverage for their basic needs, because the government does not have a national insurance scheme where they can contribute to.

Several of the doctors in The Bahamas get their training from the United States, Canada, Europe, and the University of the West Indies. A lot of specialists, including visiting doctors from the U.S., operate from private clinics in the country.

The Bahamas has three government hospitals and two private hospitals, 55 health centers (41 in the Family Islands, nine in New Providence and five in Grand Bahama), 59 satellite clinics locatedall over the country, and 288 privately owned healthcare facilities which offer primary care as well as diagnostic services. Two of the government hospitals – Princess Margaret Hospital and the Sandilands Rehabilitation Center – are located in New Providence, while the Rand Memorial Hospital can be found in Freeport, Grand Bahama. The two private hospitals in the Bahamas are Lyford Cay, located at New Providence, and Doctor’s Hospital, located at Nassau. Both hospitals offer specialized care to patients with heart diseases, in addition to general medical services and emergency care. All hospitals are equipped with advanced medical technology to cater to the various medical needs of its patients.

Meanwhile, health clinics in the smaller islands of the Bahamas are generally open only one or two days a week. Due to the relatively small population of people living in the smaller islands of the country, some islands have formed their own emergency response service to provide treatment and if needed, transfer patients to the nearest hospital.

Emergency Numbers

The following numbers can be called via mobile phone or pay phone in case of an emergency situation in the Bahamas:

• Fire: 411

• Ambulance: 919

• Police: 919, 911

• Travelers in distress: 242-326-HELP

 

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