Health Care In Ecuador

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Reviewed by Kathleen Peddicord

Kathleen is the Live and Invest Overseas Founding Publisher. She has more than 30 years of hands-on experience traveling, living, and buying property around the world.

Quality Health Care In Ecuador At An Affordable Price

Health care in Ecuador is great value and at a very high standard. But there is one disclaimer, healthcare outside the cities is not great.

The reason health care in Ecuador is so affordable and also so personal in many, many other places around the world (doctors will sit and chat with you for an hour or longer) is because there’s no pressure in these places from any insurance industry… and no pressure from any pharmaceutical industry either.

Ecuador, specifically Cuenca, is a really great example of health care at its best and cheapest. A hospital stay in a semi-private room can be as low as US$30.

What about nursing care? This can be an important and nagging issue for retirees abroad.

The truth is, not many places around the world offer appealing nursing care choices, but Cuenca, Ecuador, does.

One new nursing facility in particular is clean and well-run with professional staff and residents who are well-cared-for. A friend toured this facility and reported back:

“When I arrived (unannounced), I found a group of perhaps 15 residents enjoying the sun in the interior courtyard, while others were exercising with staff members or visiting family.

“The total cost is US$450 per month, which includes 24-hour doctor and nurse attendance, food, laundry, personal care, and occupational/rehabilitative therapy…”

Cuenca, Ecuador, is one of the best examples of how good and how almost unbelievably affordable health care can be overseas… but it’s hardly the only example.

Ecuador’s cities are home to some high quality hospitals. These have state of the art technology, specialists across the spectrum and excellent service.

An added bonus: Ecuadorian doctors spend 30 to 45 minutes with each patient. There is no rushing onto the next appointment. This means can be confident your consultation is thorough.

Cost of Health Care In Ecuador

You can receive public medical care at a cost of only 10% to 25% of that in the United States. This huge saving provides peace of mind to a lot of expats and retirees in Ecuador. While the standard is good, you need to be a resident.

Waiting times are also longer and standards are a bit below what you would expect in the States. That said, for everyday needs, public health care is more than acceptable.

Insurance In Ecuador

Most expats choose to take out medical insurance. This allows treatment at the best hospitals in Ecuador.

If you prefer to have health insurance, it’s inexpensive. Of course the costs depend on your age. Most in-network items pay at 90%, while out-of network costs are 80%. They even include US$30,000 of life insurance.

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Pharmacies In Ecuador

The cost of brand-name prescription drugs is about one-third of the price in the United States. Generics are as low as one-tenth of the comparable drug. This is another advantage of health care in Ecuador.

Ecuador doesn’t suffer with black market drugs or counterfits. Expats here report that all drugs are in correct packaging and from known companies. Complete with lot numbers and expiration dates.

Dental Care In Ecuador

Quality dental care is available throughout Ecuador. Much like general medical it is affordable to everyone. Many of the dentists in Ecuador speak a little English but you will probably need to know basic Spanish to converse. Speak with local expats to find English-speaking dentists.

Expats report great experiences with dental care in Cuenca. If you are living or retiring in Ecuador part-time, try and schedule exams and dental work for when you’re in town.

Here are the prices from a dentist who practices at Santa Ana:

Examination-office visit: US$30

Ultrasonic cleaning:US$40

Fillings: US$20 to US$50

Root Canal: US$150 (single root) Crown: US$250 to US$400

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