Healthcare and medical care
Private healthcare services are fairly widely available in the largest towns and tourist resorts. Outside large towns, the standard of treatment varies considerably. In Puerto Plata, for example, there are doctors on-call 24 hours a day, and there are medical centres are located in hotel areas.
When travelling to the Dominican Republic, you should take out comprehensive travel insurance.
The capital, Santo Domingo, has a public ambulance service, but elsewhere there are only limited services or none at all. In large towns, there are private emergency service providers. Healthcare personnel seldom speak English.
Doctors do not usually accept payment commitments from Finnish insurance companies. Instead, medical expenses and medicines are charged in pesos or American dollars. International credit cards are usually accepted. Treatment costs in the Dominican Republic can be high. You may have to pay for prescription and supply costs yourself. After a trip, you can apply for reimbursements from your insurance company on submission of receipts.
If you are health insured in Finland, and have received treatment in some other country than an EU or EEA country or Switzerland on account of a sudden illness, worsening of a chronic condition, pregnancy or childbirth, you can apply for reimbursement from Kela retrospectively. You are entitled for the same reimbursement that you would have received if you had been treated in the private healthcare system in Finland. Please note that the reimbursement usually covers only a small part of the costs of the treatment. Thus, taking out a comprehensive travel insurance is recommended.
Medicines in the Dominican Republic are cheap in general. Prescriptions are not usually required, except in the case of narcotic drugs, for example, morphine.
There are numerous pharmacies in every locality. Most pharmacies are open between 8 am and 8 pm. The country´s pharmaceutical chains are Farmacia Carol and Farmax.