Information for Patients
Columbia introduced a national health insurance system in 1993 to ensure that Colombian citizens and foreigners can get access to health services. There are three types of medical coverage available: SISBEN, Entidades Promotoras de Salud (EPS) and Medicina Prepagada. SISBEN is only available for poor or homeless Colombians, where they get free government-subsidised healthcare.
EPS is available to all Colombian residents through contracts with health insurance companies. However, due to the long waiting time and referral process in EPS, ex-pats usually use the Medicina Prepagada system for private health insurance.
Information for Health Care Professionals
Eligible health care professionals must own a valid diploma or professional certificate in a specific field to work in Colombia. The person who has graduated abroad does not need to perform the mandatory social service as long as the country of issue of a professional medical license has an international agreement with Colombia.
Medical specialities in high demand in Colombia are cardiology, cosmetic surgery, maxillofacial surgery, fertility, orthopaedics surgery, neurology, ophthalmology, organ transplant and otolaryngology.
Information for Travelers
Medical tourism has been consistently growing in Colombia in recent years. Medical tourists are mainly from the US, Canada, the Caribbean, Venezuela, Spain and Germany. The key strengths of Colombia health system are high-quality medical treatments and competitive pricing for treatments.
Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, Typhoid and Rabies vaccinations are recommended for most travellers. Also, yellow fever vaccination is required if travelling from a country with risk of yellow fever transmission. There is a risk of being infected the dengue, zika or malaria viruses while in Colombia. Please use mosquito repellents and consider taking antimalarial medication.
The official language of hospitals in Colombia is Spanish. Most doctors at private hospitals can also fluent in English.