Best Healthcare in the World
InternationalLiving.com’s annual Global Retirement Index reports that France, Uruguay and Malaysia provide the best and most affordable health care in the world.
The Health Care category in the Index considers the cost of care and the quality. Also considered are the number of people per doctor, the number of hospital beds per 1,000 people, the percentage of the population with access to safe water, the infant mortality rate, life expectancy, and public-health expenditure as a percentage of a country’s GDP.
France comes in first in this category as the best country in the world for health care. The Top 5 countries with the best healthcare in the world are as follows:
- Costa Rica
According to the World Health Organization, France has the number one health care system in the world. The country also comes first in the health care category of the InternationalLiving.com annual Global Retirement Index 2014. Despite their meat-and cream-rich diet augmented by alcohol and cigarettes, the French have been living much longer in recent years. Life expectancy now averages 85 years for women and 78 for men.
Uruguay has a variety of health care options available that include a public health care system for people who cannot afford to pay for private health care, a number of private health insurance options, and the most popular option, a hospital plan called a “mutualista.” Therefore Uruguay comes in second in the health care category of the InternationalLiving.com annual Global Retirement Index 2014. InternationalLiving.com’s Uruguay correspondent, David Hammond, who has lived in the country for seven years, says: “My personal experience with health care in Uruguay has been positive. The cost is a fraction of what I paid for private coverage in the U.S.”
Malaysia has gained fame as a medical-tourism destination because its health care is among the world’s best—and cheapest. Medical expertise here is equal to or better than that in most Western countries. Malaysia comes in third in the health care category of the InternationalLiving.com annual Global Retirement Index 2014. Despite the low cost of health care in Malaysia, many expats do get private health insurance. There is a plethora of national insurers, with no one company being preferred—expats tend to shop around and look for the cheapest offer.
4. Costa Rica
Costa Rica’s excellent and affordable health care is largely the result of government investment in the health sector, plus an atmosphere of political stability. Costa Rica comes in fourth in the health care category of the InternationalLiving.com annualGlobal Retirement Index 2014. By almost any standard, Costa Rica has some of the best health care in Latin America. Not only that, but the country’s public and private health systems are constantly being upgraded—new hospitals, new equipment, and improvements in staff training.
NOTE from Las Villas de San Buenas: One of Costa Rica’s newest hospitals is located just a couple of miles from Las Villas de San Buenas. This provides an extra layer of support and affordable healthcare options for our clients and guests.
Given the galloping rise in health care costs in the U.S. and elsewhere, Mexico’s affordable and top-notch health care is a huge benefit to living there. Pretty much across the board, health care in Mexico costs a quarter to a half of what you would pay in the U.S. Mexico comes in fifth in the health care category of the InternationalLiving.com annual Global Retirement Index 2014. Medical insurance with Mexico’s national health care service costs less than $300 a year; private insurance will cost more, depending on age and pre-existing conditions—but still a fraction of what you’d pay in the U.S. for similar coverage. Photo: Glynna Prentice,InternationalLiving.com