Emergency Medical Services Tips for US Citizens Traveling to Suriname

What are the emergency medical services like in Suriname?

Suriname has a range of emergency medical services available to the public. These include safe and reliable ambulance services, air ambulance services, medical evacuation services, and a fully-equipped trauma center at the Academic Hospital in Paramaribo. The hospital is staffed with a highly-trained team of doctors and nurses who are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Additionally, there is a government-run public health service available for those who cannot afford private healthcare.

How does the healthcare system work, and what are the options for medical care in Suriname?

The healthcare system in Suriname is divided into two separate systems: one operated by the government and the other by the private sector.

The government-operated healthcare system is composed of a network of public hospitals, clinics, and health centers. These facilities offer free or subsidized care for the general public. Most services are provided at no cost, but some services may require a fee for certain specialty treatments.

The private sector is composed of a variety of private medical facilities, including hospitals, clinics, and medical centers. These facilities offer a range of services, including specialty treatments and elective surgeries that may not be available in the public system. Private medical care can be expensive, and it is not always covered by insurance policies.

To access healthcare services in Suriname, individuals must first obtain a national health card issued by the Ministry of Health. This card serves as proof of identity and allows individuals to receive medical services at any public or private facility in Suriname. Most people in Suriname receive their healthcare through the public system, as it is the most affordable option. Private facilities may provide more comprehensive services, but they may not be as readily accessible to low-income individuals due to cost constraints.

Are there specific vaccinations or health precautions I should take before traveling to Suriname?

It is recommended that travelers to Suriname be vaccinated against measles, mumps, rubella, tetanus, diphtheria and polio. It is also recommended that travelers be up to date on routine vaccinations such as influenza and hepatitis A and B. It is also recommended that travelers get vaccinated against yellow fever if they plan to visit areas below 600m. Malaria prophylaxis may also be recommended depending on travel plans.

What is the local emergency number for medical assistance in Suriname?

The local emergency number for medical assistance in Suriname is +597 430 000.

Are there English-speaking healthcare professionals available in Suriname?

Yes, there are English-speaking healthcare professionals available in Suriname. The majority of medical professionals in Suriname speak Dutch, but there are some medical centers which offer English-speaking services and employ healthcare professionals that are fluent in English.

Is travel insurance with medical coverage recommended, and what does it typically cover in Suriname?

Yes, travel insurance with medical coverage is recommended when travelling to Suriname. It typically covers medical expenses incurred due to illness or injury while abroad, as well as trip cancellation, lost or stolen luggage, and other unexpected financial losses. It can also provide access to a global network of medical professionals and facilities in the event of an emergency.

How do I locate the nearest hospital or medical clinic in Suriname?

You can search online for the nearest hospital or medical clinic in Suriname. The best way to find one is to use a search engine such as Google, type in “hospital or medical clinic near me” and add your Suriname location. This should bring up a list of hospitals and medical clinics in the area. You can also use an online directory such as Yellow Pages Suriname to find a hospital or medical clinic near you.

Are there any health risks or concerns specific to Suriname that I should be aware of?

Yes, there are a few health risks or concerns specific to Suriname that travelers should be aware of. These include mosquito-borne illnesses such as malaria, dengue, and Zika; food and waterborne illnesses such as diarrhea, hepatitis A and E, and typhoid; and diseases associated with poor sanitation such as cholera. Additionally, travelers should be aware of the risks posed by animals such as snakes and other reptiles, as well as other potential hazards in the environment such as electric current in the water. It is important for travelers to Suriname to take precautions to protect themselves, such as using insect repellent, drinking only bottled or boiled water, and avoiding contact with wild animals.

What over-the-counter medications are available locally in case of minor illnesses in Suriname?

Over-the-counter medications available locally in Suriname for minor illnesses include: ibuprofen, acetaminophen, antacids, antibiotics, antihistamines, decongestants, cough and cold medicines, antifungals, anti-diarrheals, and eye drops.

Can I use my U.S. health insurance for medical services in Suriname, or do I need additional travel insurance?

You cannot use your U.S. health insurance for medical services in Suriname, and you will need additional travel insurance to cover any medical expenses incurred while in Suriname. Make sure that the travel insurance you purchase covers medical expenses in the country you’re travelling to, as some policies may not provide coverage for medical care outside of the United States.

What medical documentation or records should I carry with me while traveling to Suriname?

It is recommended that before traveling to Suriname, you obtain and carry with you the following documents:

• A valid passport
• An up-to-date vaccination record, including proof of receiving yellow fever and hepatitis A and B vaccines
• A prescription from a doctor for any medications that you are taking, along with the original packaging for those medications
• The name and contact information for your primary care physician and any specialists that you see
• A letter from your doctor describing any existing medical conditions, such as allergies or pre-existing conditions, and any medical treatments or therapies you may need while traveling
• Medical insurance information including policy number and emergency contact information
• A copy of your health insurance card
• Contact information for the nearest embassy or consulate
• A list of medications you are taking, including dosage instructions and any adverse reactions you have had in the past to certain medications

Are there any restrictions or regulations regarding the import of medications into Suriname?

Yes, there are restrictions and regulations regarding the import of medications into Suriname. The importation of prescription medications must be in accordance with the Surinamese Health Care Act, which states that medications must have an official Surinamese health registration number before they can be imported. All prescription medications must be shipped in the original packaging and accompanied by the original prescription. Furthermore, all imported medications must be inspected by a Surinamese health inspector prior to being allowed entry into the country.

How can I access prescription medications or medical supplies in Suriname?

Prescription medications and medical supplies can be accessed through pharmacies, hospitals, and clinics in Suriname. Additionally, medical supplies can be purchased online from several different vendors. To purchase prescription medications online, you will need a valid prescription from a doctor in Suriname.

Are there reputable pharmacies or medical facilities in popular tourist areas of Suriname?

Yes, there are several reputable pharmacies and medical facilities in popular tourist areas of Suriname. The most popular tourist areas in Suriname include the capital city of Paramaribo, Brownsberg Nature Park, Galibi Nature Reserve, and the Coppename River. In Paramaribo, there are several pharmacies and medical facilities including the Apotheek de Zorg, a well-known pharmacy, and the Centraal Medisch Centrum, a hospital with an emergency room and specialists. In Brownsberg Nature Park, there is the Anand Nivas Clinic, which offers medical services and basic medications for minor ailments. In Galibi Nature Reserve, there is the Parima Clinic, which provides basic medical care and vaccinations for travelers. In the Coppename River area, there is a clinic in Nieuw Nickerie that offers medical services. All of these medical facilities provide quality care for travelers and have English-speaking staff.

What should I do in case of a medical emergency, and how can I get assistance quickly in Suriname?

In case of a medical emergency, it is important to call the ambulance service as quickly as possible. The number for the ambulance service in Suriname is 112. If you are unable to call for help, you can approach a nearby police station or fire station for assistance.

Are there specific health and safety measures I should follow to prevent common illnesses in Suriname?

Yes, there are certain health and safety measures that should be followed to prevent common illnesses in Suriname. These include:

• Get vaccinated against common illnesses, such as measles, yellow fever, diphtheria, tetanus, and polio.

• Practice good hygiene by washing your hands regularly with soap and water or using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.

• Use insect repellent to protect yourself against mosquito-borne diseases like malaria and dengue fever.

• Wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants when outdoors to reduce the risk of insect bites.

• Drink safe water or beverages that have been boiled or treated with chlorine tablets or iodine drops.

• Avoid contact with animals and their waste products.

Are there any cultural or legal considerations regarding medical care in Suriname?

Yes, some cultural and legal considerations should be taken into account when providing medical care in Suriname. These include respecting the patient’s religious beliefs when providing care, and adhering to the laws regarding medical confidentiality. Additionally, in some cases, family or community members may need to be consulted before making medical decisions. Finally, it is important to be aware of the laws and regulations around the provision of medical care in Suriname, such as the need for a valid medical license and registration with the Ministry of Health.

What is the availability of emergency medical evacuation services in Suriname?

Emergency medical evacuation services are available in Suriname through a variety of private providers. The cost and availability of these services vary, depending on the provider and the patient’s medical condition.

Are there any specific health advisories or warnings for travelers to Suriname?

Travelers to Suriname should take precautions against mosquito-borne illnesses, such as malaria and dengue fever. It is also recommended that travelers be up to date on their routine vaccinations, including the measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine, the diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis vaccine, the varicella (chickenpox) vaccine, the polio vaccine, and the influenza (flu) shot. Additionally, visitors should take measures to protect themselves from food and waterborne illnesses.

What is the cost of medical services, and is it common to pay out-of-pocket in Suriname?

The cost of medical services in Suriname varies depending on the type of service and provider, but is generally considered to be affordable. It is common for patients to pay out-of-pocket for medical services, though some are covered by public health insurance.