Health-care in the Philippines

An overview

Health-care in the Philippines

While an expat’s view of health-care in the Philippines may be one of a system lacking basic care this is far from the truth, especially in the major cities of Manila, Cebu and Davao, where facilities rivalling Western standards can be found.

As of 2011 the Philippines is classed as a Newly Industrialized Country (NIC) which puts it somewhere between developing and developed countries. As such, its health-care system has been improved over the last few decades. That said, there is a large discrepancy in health-care provision with people in rural areas lacking access to the most basic medical treatments.

On average there is approximately 1 doctor per 800 people, with 1,700 hospitals, 60% of which are privately run. Doctors, nurses, midwives and other medical practitioners train in a variety of high-class universities, and many have studied in the US for part of their training. The standard of hospitals and clinics in the Philippines isn’t as high as those in Europe or the USA but top hospitals such as the medical centre in Alabang compare favourably with Western treatment centres.

Government spending on health-care has been declining since around 1990. The budget for health-care in 2010 was about $597 million, which works out to be $7 per person. On average, health-care spending is above that of Indonesia but less than Thailand.

Further reading

Does this article help?

Do you have any comments, updates or questions on this topic? Ask them here: