Healthcare in Egypt

The Egyptian healthcare system consists of two sectors: public and private. In general, the public healthcare system is of a low standard due to a lack of funding and understaffing.

Government investment in the public healthcare system is very low. There are significant differences between the availability of health services in the basic institutions in rural areas and those found in a big city such as Cairo. Most specialist procedures are carried out in the capital.

International Healthcare Solutions For Private Individuals

Healthcare plans designed specifically for expatriates and local nationals living in Egypt.

Although there have been attempts by the Egyptian government to reform public healthcare, the system is still substandard and almost certainly not on par with anything that a Western expat would be accustomed to. Even though it is provided free of charge to locals and potentially to expats, many Egyptians avoid public hospitals due to factors such as outdated equipment, long queues for treatment, inadequately trained staff and poor sanitation levels.
Private healthcare facilities in Egypt are of a high standard, and medical staff are used to treating foreign nationals. Expats can also opt for insurance that covers evacuation to a different country with better medical facilities for more specialised care. Communicating in English won’t be an issue, as medical staff in private healthcare are generally bilingual.
Pharmacies are widely available throughout Egypt. Larger chains, such as El Ezaby, operate 24-hour services while the majority of pharmacies also provide home delivery, which can be arranged over the phone or online. International brands of medications are not always available in Egypt, so expats should do some research into local equivalents before relocating.

Expats often need some time to acclimatise to the searing temperatures in Egypt. It is vital to stay well hydrated, but poor sanitation is a risk so it is best to avoid tap water and rather opt for bottled water instead.

Egypt is said to have one of the highest hepatitis C rates in the world, and tuberculosis is also a threat, though less serious than a decade ago. Rabies is a problem in parts of Egypt, and getting the vaccination, particularly for children as they are most often victims of rabies, is recommended.

For those travellers who have respiratory issues, the dense air pollution in Cairo caused by traffic congestion and industrial sites can be problematic.

Routine vaccinations are recommended, including ones for hepatitis A, typhoid, measles, mumps, rubella, diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, varicella, polio and influenza, as well as for Covid-19.

Expats should dial 123 in case of emergencies. Heavy traffic as well as congested medical facilities can mean it may be difficult for emergency services to arrive speedily.