Friday, January 22, 2010

Panama: Day 8

Finally getting down to the business of researching my article on medical tourism. Visited some of the major facilities in town.

Panama has a 3-tiered system of health care delivery. At the top are the private hospitals. A good example of this is the Hospital Punta Pacifica, in the "high rent" district. The facility is affiliated with Johns Hopkins. Also included in this group is the privately owned Hospital Nacional.
The next tier is semi-public/private. On the bottom rung are the public hospitals like Santo Tomas.

Lots of information to juggle and put into context.

Many thanks to my driver and hospital administrators who took time out of their busy Friday to answer my questions and conduct a tour.

Did you know that many facilities will not allow flowers in a patient's room? Many oversized bouquets and baskets sit in the hallway outside a closed door. They are concerned about allergies, and insect bites. After all, it's malaria country here in the tropics.

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