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Healthcare in Hong Kong is world-class. Both public and private hospitals are equipped with the latest medical technology operated by highly trained medical staff, many of whom speak good English.
However, the region also carries some of the world’s highest healthcare costs – so expats should ensure that they have adequate insurance coverage.
Public healthcare in Hong Kong
Anyone with a Hong Kong Identity Card is entitled to subsidised medical services, but foreigners without permanent residency must shoulder costs that are similar to fees incurred by private entities as services are charged at market rates.
Generally, the standard found in public hospitals is high, but service levels can be lacking and efficiency can suffer. Most expats therefore opt for private healthcare.
Private healthcare in Hong Kong
Hong Kong has around a dozen private hospitals with international accreditation. Private healthcare services are popular with expats because they come with the benefits of shorter waiting times, privacy and other comforts.
Fees range from slightly higher than in the public sector to extremely pricey if one decides to make use of luxury services. Either way, expats should organise some form of health insurance to cover costs. Health coverage is often included in employment contracts, but expats who don't have such perks can choose from a wide variety of service providers offering various programmes and packages. We do recommend negotiating with employers for healthcare subsidies, though.
Healthcare schemes vary widely, so finding out what is included in an employer-sponsored scheme is important and, for those securing a plan themselves, we recommend comparing quotes before settling on a service provider.
Private hospitals in Hong Kong
Address: 1 Old Peak Road, Hong Kong
Matilda International Hospital
Address: 41 Mount Kellett Road, The Peak, Hong Kong
Hong Kong Sanatorium and Hospital
Address: 2 Village Road, Happy Valley, Hong Kong
Pharmacies in Hong Kong
There are plenty of well-stocked pharmacies in Hong Kong. Most are open seven days a week, with some operating 24/7.
Health hazards in Hong Kong
Air pollution in Hong Kong is arguably the region's biggest health concern and, despite the government's best efforts, continues to fall short of international benchmarks. As a result, expats with asthma and chronic respiratory diseases often have aggravated symptoms. Children, the elderly, and those with vulnerable immune systems are most commonly affected, while even healthy foreigners may suffer from nose, throat and chest irritation. That said, most healthy people exposed to air pollution for a short time experience no lasting negative effects.