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Insider’s Guide to the Health System in Gambia

Discover the realities of the healthcare system in Gambia and how it may serve expats, digital nomads, retirees, and others who relocate or reside in the country.
|-Insider’s Guide to the Health System in Gambia

The healthcare system in Gambia is a mix of public and private healthcare. The public healthcare system is provided by the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare and is free for Gambian citizens. Foreigners (expats and digital nomads) are allowed to use the public healthcare system in Gambia, however, it is not typically used by foreigners. Public hospitals are not recommended for serious medical emergencies and major surgery, as the quality of care is not as high as private hospitals.

Gambia’s Public Healthcare System

Gambia’s public healthcare system is provided by the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare and is free for Gambian citizens. The public healthcare system is comprised of a network of health centers, clinics, and hospitals located throughout the country. The public healthcare system is not typically used by foreigners, as the quality of care is not as high as private hospitals.

Gambia’s Private Healthcare System

Gambia’s private healthcare system is comprised of a network of private hospitals and clinics located throughout the country. Private healthcare is more expensive than public healthcare, but the quality of care is higher. Expats primarily use private hospitals, as they are more reliable and offer better quality care. Private hospitals are recommended for serious medical emergencies and major surgery.

Gambia’s Top Hospitals

Gambia’s top hospitals include:

  • Edward Francis Small Teaching Hospital (public, located in Banjul)
  • Royal Victoria Teaching Hospital (public, located in Banjul)
  • Medical Research Council (public, located in Fajara)
  • Banjul Private Hospital (private, located in Banjul)
  • Bakau Health Centre (public, located in Bakau)
  • Kanifing General Hospital (public, located in Kanifing)
  • Sukuta Health Centre (public, located in Sukuta)
  • Brikama Health Centre (public, located in Brikama)

Health Insurance Companies in Gambia

The most popular private health insurers in Gambia are Star Health Insurance, Atlantic Health Insurance, and Trust Health Insurance. Expats and digital nomads typically use these companies or specialized expat health insurance providers.

Insider Tips from Expats in Gambia: How to Navigate the Health System

“Gambia has a public health system that provides basic medical services to its citizens. The country has a number of hospitals and clinics that offer a range of services, including primary care, obstetrics and gynecology, pediatrics, and surgery. The quality of care varies from facility to facility, but overall, the medical services in Gambia are adequate for most basic medical needs. The country also has a number of private medical facilities that offer more specialized services,” commented one member living in Gambia.

“Gambia has a public healthcare system that provides basic healthcare services to its citizens. The quality of public healthcare in Gambia is generally considered to be low, with limited access to specialized care and medications. Foreign residents in Gambia are able to access the public healthcare system, but the quality of care is not as high as in other countries. Expats in Gambia typically use private healthcare services, which are more expensive but offer better quality care. Private healthcare services are available in major cities, but access to these services is limited in rural areas,” commented one member living in Gambia.

Joshua WoodJoshua Wood, LPC joined Expat Exchange in 2000 and serves as one of its Co-Presidents. He is also one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. Prior to Expat Exchange, Joshua worked for NBC Cable (MSNBC and CNBC Primetime). Joshua has a BA from Syracuse and a Master's in Clinical and Counseling Psychology from Fairleigh Dickinson University. Mr. Wood is also a licensed counselor and psychotherapist.

Some of Joshua's articles include Pros and Cons of Living in Portugal, 10 Best Places to Live in Ireland and Pros and Cons of Living in Uruguay. Connect with Joshua on LinkedIn.

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