What comes to mind when you think of the Bahamas? You probably envision serene beaches, incredible food or the colorful Junkanoo celebration that takes place every Christmas. What you’re probably not thinking about are unpredictable medical expenses.
When you leave the country on a trip, there’s always a risk that you won’t be able to receive the medical services you need during an emergency. Thankfully, the Bahamas have a developed medical care system. Keep reading to learn more about health care in the Bahamas for travelers.
Health Care in the Bahamas
The health care system in the Bahamas is run by the government. Most of the hospitals found in this island system are located on New Providence. However, there are several private hospitals and smaller health clinics that offer care to specific communities on other islands.
Some citizens receive free health care through the Bahamas health care system, including:
- Pregnant women.
- Adults over 60.
- Civil servants.
Unlike medical access in the United States, all medicines in the Bahamas require a prescription from a doctor before purchase. If you bring medication with you onto the islands, make sure you keep it in its original packaging with your doctor’s prescription in case you need a refill.
Additionally, some legal medications in the U.S. may not be legal in the Bahamas, so it’s important to check on this before taking any medication with you. Although medical care in the Bahamas is good, many locals travel to the U.S. for more affordable options. As a tourist, this may be your best option as well.
Health Insurance for International Patients
If you’re traveling to the Bahamas from the U.S., your insurance is unlikely to cover any medical care you receive on the islands. To protect yourself from accidents and ensuing medical expenses, you’ll want to invest in travel insurance.
In addition to getting travel insurance, you should also look into emergency evacuation services. Not every kind of illness or injury can be treated in the Bahamas, and you may need to fly home to receive medical treatment.
Most travelers to the Bahamas can enjoy their time in the sunshine without any problems whatsoever. However, medical emergencies don’t wait until you’re ready for them. To ensure you get the most enjoyment out of your trip, it’s highly recommended that you invest in travel health insurance.
International Hospitals in the Bahamas
If you do need hospital services while in the Bahamas, there are many good hospitals to choose from. Most of the Bahamas’ hospitals are clustered on New Providence, where the capital, Nassau, is located. Although it’s small, this island has several different hospitals and medical clinics.
There are also several hospitals and medical clinics located on an island north of New Providence called Grand Bahama. If you’re seeking medical care for a complicated condition at a smaller clinic, you’ll likely be referred to the hospitals on New Providence, or you could be advised to travel back to the U.S. for care.
Here’s more about some of the prominent hospitals in the Bahamas, so you can make an informed decision for medical care.
Princess Margaret Hospital
This is the largest Bahamas hospital on the islands, with more than 400 beds and an impressive range of medical services. The Princess Margaret Hospital is located in Nassau on New Providence and is government-owned. Here are a few of the medical care services offered at this facility:
- Pediatrics care
- Surgical care
- Intensive care
- Maternity care
- Emergency care
- Chest care
Because the Princess Margaret Hospital is a public institution, it serves many of the locals for free. This hospital gets good reviews and offers affordable, high-quality care.
If you’d rather be seen at a private institution, the Doctor’s Hospital is also located in Nassau and is a fully-equipped medical hospital. It has more than 70 beds and offers services that include the following:
- Emergency medicine
- Cardiovascular surgery
- Pediatrics care
- General surgery
This hospital also gets good reviews online — patients say their care was excellent and the cost affordable. Of course, you’ll likely have to pay upfront unless you have travel insurance that covers medical costs while abroad. This hospital has a second location, Doctor’s Hospital West, on the other side of the island.
The Medical Pavilion
To serve the most patients with high-quality, affordable care, this medical center has adopted a “partnered care” model. They combine 10 different medical centers in one location to better serve patients and address all their needs.
Services at the Medical Pavilion include cancer, heart care, imaging, dialysis, chest care and more. This center isn’t ideal for emergency services, as they’re closed over the weekend. However, they offer high-quality care and can treat tourists with a range of medical issues.
Yet another hospital located on New Providence, this facility is located in the beautiful and exclusive Lyford Cay area on the western side of the island. This private hospital is small compared to its competitors, but it offers a high quality of care.
Specialties include cardiology, internal medicine and family practice. If you need emergency care over the weekend, you’ll need to go somewhere else — according to their website, Lyford Cay is closed on Saturdays and Sundays.
Sandilands Rehabilitation Centre
Located on the east side of New Providence, this medical center focuses on mental health and addiction treatment. It’s also government-owned, and in addition to treating patients, this facility has a family guidance center to support loved ones.
Rand Memorial Hospital
Found on Grand Bahama, this hospital serves the local community as well as tourists in need of medical care. Rand Memorial offers a variety of medical services, including:
- Surgical care.
- Emergency care.
- Pediatrics care.
- Laboratory services.
- Radiology services.
- Pathology care.
In addition to this hospital, there are several other clinics, medical centers and hospitals on Grand Bahama. These include Lucayan Medical East, Eight Mile Rock Clinic and Sunrise Medical Centre Hospital.
Other Medical Centers
In addition to these hospitals, the Ministry of Health in the Bahamas operates over 10 clinics in connection to the Princess Margaret Hospital. When patients have complicated conditions, they can be transferred there to receive optimal care.
Because the economy is driven by tourism, several additional hospitals are being built on New Providence and Grand Bahama. Although medical care on the islands is already good, it will only improve as this sector of the economy grows.
Fly Home From the Bahamas With REVA
At REVA, we offer professional air ambulance and medical transport services. Our staff are highly trained to offer clients compassionate, qualified care while in the air so you can have peace of mind during transport. Wherever you are in the world when an accident occurs, we can come and get you.
We’ve also created our own travel protection plan, called ARREVA Advantage. This plan covers medical evacuation and concierge services so we can get you home and to the medical care you need should something unexpected happen while you’re traveling.