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San Jose, Costa Rica | Will I need to travel to see a specialist? | Expat Exchange
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Chinatown in San Jose, Costa Rica

Will I need to travel to see a specialist?

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When we asked members in San Jose if they typically need to travel to see specialists, they replied...

"Yes, there are a good number of medical specialists in San Jose. People in need of highly specialized medical care can go to the CIMA Hospital, which is a private hospital that offers a wide range of medical services, including specialized care. Additionally, the Hospital Mexico, which is a public hospital, also offers specialized medical care. For those seeking specialized care outside of San Jose, the Clinica Biblica in San Jose is a private hospital that offers a wide range of medical services, including highly specialized care," remarked another expat in San Jose, Costa Rica.

"If you go private (and either pay through insurance or out of pocket), specialists are easy. They're everywhere and fast, friendly appointments are normal. If you're in the public system, specialists are often where the system breaks down the most. Everybody is assigned to a local clinic, and these are fine, but most local clinics don't have specialists. To see a specialist you're sent elsewhere, and this can take multiple visits simply to make an appointment (you actually need appointments to make appointments) and then when you finally get an appointment, it can be up to a year later. I've also had the clerk lose my file and tell me I needed to start all over again, although in fairness I once saw a specialist on the same day I was sent. Anyway, seeing specialists is often the weakest link in the public health system chain, and many locals just pay private at this point. But sometimes seeing a specialist in the public system is easy. It's a crap shoot," said a member in San José, Costa Rica.

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Will I need to travel to see a specialist?

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Chinatown in San Jose, Costa Rica

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