Health Care in Buenos Aires

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Argentina is unique to many countries because free public health care is 100% available to anyone who needs it. Even foreigners are eligible. If you’re sick, you can go to one of the hospitals, and they will give you the necessary care. The medical attention is decent, though you can end up having to wait for a long time, and the public hospitals lack high end equipment.

For these reasons, it is advised that you come prepared. If you are staying for a short vacation, make sure you are covered through a health insurance plan that you can sign up for in your home country. If you plan on living in Argentina for an extended period of time, you may want to consider purchasing one of the private health plans available. They are usually cheaper than getting long term health insurance from your home country, and will save you a lot of headaches.

There are many different health plan options available in Argentina. Three of the biggest health insurance providers include OSDE Binario, Swiss Medical, and Medicus. The advantage with these three companies is you have access to a variety of health centers and doctors across the city, and they also have decent coverage throughout the country.

Another option is to sign up for health insurance with some of the individual hospitals and medical centers (Ex. Hospital Alemán, Hospital Italiano). These can be cheaper than the three companies listed above. However, the medical care you receive is often limited (fewer facilities, less doctors to choose from, less coverage).

All health plans include their own “cartilla.” This is a list of doctors with different specializations that provide medical care covered by your health plan. You can go to these doctors instead of going to one of the medical centers, and you can even order a doctor to your house when you are sick and don´t want to go anywhere. Talk about service!

The benefits included for each health plan vary significantly, as do prices. For example, the best health insurance plan from one of the top insurance providers will include everything – medical care, dental care, optical care, international coverage, and even cosmetic surgery! Yes, that is correct, you can get a health plan that includes certain cosmetic surgery operations. You receive all of these benefits without ever having to pay anything.

Here is a list of plans for the larger Medical Insurance providers in Buenos Aires:

Swiss Medical
Osde Binario
Hospital Italiano
Hospital Aleman

Is health care in Argentina good? How does it compare to wealthy developed countries? The answer to these questions vary significantly depending on the health plan you purchase and what city you live in. If you purchase a health plan with one of the major companies, and you live in Buenos Aires, you can expect excellent care and great facilities. In fact, many foreigners feel they receive better medical attention here than in their home country.

If you are trying to decide what company to get your medical plan with, I recommend getting quotes from Medicus, OSDE, and Swiss Medical. These companies will offer you the most comprehensive health plans, and you will have access to the best doctors and the best facilities.

For more information on each company, as well as English speaking contacts, please follow the links below:

Swiss Medical
OSDE Binario

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  1. Nadia says:

    I went to the Hospital Alemano for a problem to my eyes and it was very good. I spent 100 pesos for the visit and then I got a small operation that anyway was 3.5 times less expensive than in Europe. Hospital its self is very good.

  2. Janis says:

    If I lived in the USA today, I couldn’t afford health care. I get better attention from doctors with OSDE than I did in the USA. I am totally satisfied with the care I’ve had over the past 11 years.

    Good post to assist newcomers in finding a plan.

  3. Thomas says:

    I sell hospital insurance in the US and it is becoming more expensive by the day. I’m looking to relocate somewhere in south america and found many good articles on Argentina. They are a highly civilized country with much higher standards than the rest of central and latin America. I see this country being a boon for foreign medical tourism.

  4. Laura says:

    Argentinean’s private hospital & health care systems work better than America. I had a bariatric surgery and it only cost me USD4500, it´s unbelievable! You can find more info over here:

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