Healthcare in Hong Kong
Healthcare in Hong Kong is world class. Both public and private hospitals are equipped with the latest medical technology operated by highly trained medical staff, many of whom can speak English.
However, the region also carries some of the world’s highest healthcare costs and expats should ensure that they have adequate insurance coverage.
Public healthcare in Hong Kong
Anyone with a Hong Kong Identity Card is entitled to subsidised medical services, but foreigners without permanent residency must shoulder costs that are similar to fees incurred by private entities; services are charged at market rates.
Generally, the standard found in public hospitals is high, but service levels can be lacking and efficiency can suffer. Most expats therefore opt for private healthcare.
Private healthcare in Hong Kong
Hong Kong has around a dozen private hospitals with international accreditation.
Private healthcare services are popular with expats because they don't cost much more than public services and come with the benefits of shorter waiting times and easier access to comforts such as privacy.
Fees do tend to be slightly higher than in the public sector, and expats will have to organise some form of health insurance to cover costs. Health coverage is often included in employment contracts but expats who don't have such perks can choose from a wide variety of service providers.
Healthcare programmes vary widely, so finding out what is included in an employer-sponsored scheme is important and, for those securing a plan themselves, comparing quotes before settling on a service provider is a good idea.
Private hospitals in Hong Kong
Below is a list of some of the more popular private hospitals in Hong Kong for expats:
Address: 1 Old Peak Road, Hong Kong
Matilda International Hospital
Address: 41 Mount Kellett Road, The Peak, Hong Kong
Hong Kong Sanatorium and Hospital
Address: 2 Village Road, Happy Valley, Hong Kong
Pharmacies in Hong Kong
There are plenty of well-stocked pharmacies in Hong Kong. Most are open seven days a week, with some operating 24/7.
Health hazards in Hong Kong
Air pollution in Hong Kong is arguably the region's biggest health concern. Despite the government's best efforts, pollution levels consistently fail the World Health Organization's safety standards.
As a result, expats with asthma and chronic respiratory diseases often have aggravated symptoms. Children, the elderly, and those with vulnerable immune systems are most commonly affected, while even healthy foreigners may suffer from nose, throat and chest irritation. That said, most healthy people exposed to air pollution for a short time experience no lasting negative effects.
Emergency services in Hong Kong
Emergency services in Hong Kong are generally reliable, with more than 90 percent of ambulances reaching the scene of the emergency within the target time of 12 minutes. For ambulances, police and fire services, 999 can be dialled.