In contrast to numerous expat destinations, Hong Kong has an established, inexpensive public healthcare system for which non-residents qualify, as long as they have a valid visa and ID card.
Rest assured that when you are searching for top-notch healthcare in Hong Kong, you are guaranteed to be in good hands. You will find English-speaking doctors that have trained at top international institutes. The quality of both public and private healthcare is superior in Hong Kong. Nonetheless, many expats still opt for expat health insurance, whether purchasing it by themselves or through their employer.
How Does the Healthcare System Work in Hong Kong?
The healthcare system of Hong Kong is divided into two parts: public healthcare and private healthcare. If you choose the public healthcare insurance system, you do not need private healthcare insurance. The Hong Kong government provides healthcare services for free or for a negligible fee. If you choose private healthcare insurance, it is advised to have reliable expat health insurance, as the treatments can be expensive.
Public Health Insurance in Hong Kong
The public medical care services are controlled together by the Hong Kong Department of Health and the Hospital Authority.
Residents of Hong Kong including citizens, permanent residents, and even expats make no monetary contributions towards Hong Kong’s public healthcare insurance system. All healthcare services are offered free of cost or for a small fee. To be able to use public health insurance, you must have a valid visa and the Hong Kong ID card.
Hong Kong public health insurance meets leading medical standards and provides up-to-date medical equipment. Most hospitals under the public healthcare system provide 24-hour emergency and accident services. There are also a number of centers for maternal healthcare services.
Dental care is not covered under the public healthcare system in Hong Kong. Only in a dental emergency can you seek the services of a public dentist. For dental services, you will need private health insurance.
The drawback of the Hong Kong public health insurance system is that it commonly draws in long queues and does not necessarily promise a patient-friendly environment.
Expat Health Insurance for Expats in Hong Kong
The private health insurance in Hong Kong offers more comprehensive medical coverage. Expats can buy expat health insurance for Hong Kong themselves in case it isn’t offered through the employer.
Medical costs in Hong Kong are among the highest in the world. Public health insurance may not be an answer for all expats; hence, buying expat health insurance in Hong Kong is highly advised. You can even complement the basic-coverage-only health insurance provided by your employer with additional coverage if deemed necessary.
Hong Kong citizens and expatriates often choose private medical facilities due to their high level of service and high-quality treatment without the long queues, language barriers, or waiting times. These facilities and priority services come at a high cost that is easily covered under private health insurance.
Types of Private Health Insurance Plans
There are numerous options for expat health insurance in Hong Kong. You can choose between a local plan or international private health insurance. Local private health insurance covers expenses only in Hong Kong, whereas expat health insurance plans are movable to different countries.
Public or Expat Health Insurance in Hong Kong?
With strong government support, highly qualified doctors, and modern facilities, Hong Kong has one of the best public healthcare systems in the world. But still, expat health insurance has benefits over the public health insurance system when it comes to accessibility, comfort, and quality of care.
The number of private hospitals in Hong Kong is far fewer than public hospitals, but still, they offer shorter waiting times as compared to public hospitals. In public hospitals, you can expect to wait 30-40 weeks for a surgery or a specialist appointment. The public healthcare system is burdened due to the rapidly aging population, leading to longer waiting times. Many residents turn toward exploring private health insurance and private healthcare to avoid these delays.
For many, the primary reason to choose private health insurance over public is the promise of comfort and privacy. You can choose a fully private room or semi-private single room based on your preferred level of comfort and privacy.
Private rooms are accompanied by a personal lavatory, washroom, television, Wi-Fi, dining room, visitor’s room, and a kitchen.
3. Quality of Care:
Although public hospitals are equipped with modern facilities, well-educated doctors, and well-trained staff, the quality of care has suffered due to the overburdening of public healthcare services. Private hospitals offer comprehensive care and internationally trained staff who endeavour to deliver world-class quality of care.
With the benefits offered, choosing expat health insurance in Hong Kong is the right path for expats in Hong Kong who need medical care.
Moving to a new country can be overwhelming and exciting at the same time. Whether you are moving to Hong Kong alone or with family, safety is a must. While you will be engulfed with Hong Kong’s vibrant culture and breathtaking tropical views, it is imperative to secure yourself with good expat health insurance in Hong Kong to relieve any mental pressure caused by your health and medical needs. A tailor-made, flexible health insurance plan that covers all your (and your family’s) healthcare needs will provide you with peace of mind during this busy and exciting time.