Ivory Coast Medical Insurance
Health standards in the Cote d’Ivoire are poor. The country ranks 149 of the 169 countries and territories in the 2010 UNDP Human Development Index, indicating low human development. The life expectancy at birth is 47 years and the infant mortality rate in the country is 68.1 per 1,000 live births. For children under-5, the mortality rate is 127 per 1,000 live births and over 15% of the population is reported to be undernourished. The probability of dying before the age of 40 is 38.6%. Half the population lives below the global poverty line (less than US$ 2 a day) and only 80% have access to clean drinking water with 24% having contact to improved sanitation facilities as well.
Over the last decade, as a result of chronic civil conflict, the health care system in the Cote d’Ivoire has deteriorated and been unable to meet the basic health needs for the majority of the populace. The state’s capacity to deliver basic social services such as health care and education is paralysed. There are continual shortages of necessary medical equipment, medicine, and healthcare professionals. There are only an estimated 10 physicians, 60 nurses and 40 hospital beds per 100,000 people. Only 57% of births are attended to by a skilled health care professional. Health staff are not distributed evenly across the country, with over 60% of the workforce concentrated around Abidjan. Worsening sanitary and infrastructure conditions have been to blame for new outbreaks such as measles, cholera, yellow fever and meningitis that have appeared in some regions in Cote d’Ivoire.
HIV/AIDS and malaria are the leading causes of death. The adult HIV prevalence rate in Cote d’Ivoire is at 4.7 percent, one of the highest in West Africa. There are an estimated 750,000 people are living with HIV in the country. Transmission predominantly occurs by means of intercourse, needle sharing or mother-to-child transmission. Despite efforts beginning in 2001 to educate and combat against HIV/AIDS, political unrest has prevented the expansion of HIV services.
Abidjan features several private-run medical facilities that are adequately equipped but not up to North American or West European treatment quality standards. Pharmacies are well stocked but newer drugs may not be yet available. Patients will be expected to cover all medical costs as there is no health insurance scheme. Most expatriates in Cote d’Ivoire use the Polyclinique Internationale Ste. Anne-Marie (PISAM) (tel. 22-44-51-32; it also has 24/7 emergency facilities); Les Bleuets Clinique (tel. 22-41-72-08; specializes in paediatrics and ob/gyn); or the Polyclinique Internationale de La Indenie (tel. 20-21-53-53).
It is strongly recommended that you take out a comprehensive health insurance plan that will cover any overseas medical costs, including medical evacuation, before you depart for the Cote d’Ivoire. Medical treatment can be found of a reasonable standard in Abidjan, but can be expensive, and emergency services are limited to a few select hospitals. Doctors will require payment prior to treatment regardless of whether you have health insurance coverage. Health facilities outside of Abidjan are very rudimentary. Serious medical issues will require an emergency air evacuation to a country with high calibre medical facilities. Such services can be very expensive without prior evacuation coverage, usually as part of an international health insurance plan.
Malaria and Yellow Fever are common in Cote d’Ivoire, while cholera is present in rural areas and tuberculosis is fast becoming a concern again. Protect yourself by getting the appropriate vaccinations before travelling, taking prophylaxis against malaria and using an insect repellent and bed nets while in the country. Due to poor quality of water sanitation the risk of contacting water borne diseases are very high. Travellers should only drink boiled or bottled water and avoid ice cubes in drinks.
Pacific Prime will consult and offer a wide range of policies to meet your individual needs should you plan to travel to Cote d’Ivoire. We offer a wide variety of health care plans and travel insurance policies with possible benefit packages including dental, maternity, inpatient, outpatient, specialist consultations, and many more. Please contact our professional advisors today for a free quote and enjoy the security that our extensive Health Insurance Plans can provide.