Sunday, September 27, 2020

Chilean Healthcare

 Healthcare is always a big question to answer when you are considering moving to a foreign country. Our experience with the system overall has been very favorable. We typically use our little local hospital for most of our health problems. We signed up for Fonasa which is the public healthcare insurance system based on your income. Our income level entitles us to almost  free service at public hospitals. We sometimes have to make a co-pay for diagnostic services like x-rays. The higher your income, the more is your co-pay. When we have a problem, we go to our local hospital to see the doctor. If they cannot handle the problem, they will send us by ambulance to the larger city hospital an hour away. 

A very scared unhappy boy on his ride to the big hospital

Last Christmas, our son had a sharp pain in his side that we did not feel to good about so we took him to the hospital emergency room. We only waited a few minutes. After an exam, the doctor thought it might be appendicitis so they put him in the ambulance and took him to the big hospital. There he had an ultrasound showing an inflamed appendix so that night the pediatric surgeon came in and did the surgery. We were impressed with the professionalism and care we got at this public hospital. Everything was clean and well maintained on par with US hospitals though not as much marble and chandeliers. The best part of the whole experience was that we paid absolutely nothing! In the US, we lived in fear of a major medical emergency. 

If you don't like or want to use the public healthcare system, you can always use the private hospitals. Jim needed an MRI and he didn't want to wait for an appointment at the public hospital so we went to the private hospital and got it done right away and only paid $256 for 3 MRIs. These would have been thousands of dollars in the USA and they even used the same machine as his US doctor. 

Want to know more about healthcare in Chile? Then buy my book for a whole chapter on this topic. See side bar for the link. Your purchase of my book includes a worksheet on what documents you need to gather for immigration and includes a chat by phone or email with Jim or Lori to answer all your most pressing questions!