Over the last couple of years, lots of expats who are planning a move to Georgia for retiring have wondered about The healthcare in Georgia, in terms of quality and cost.
According to a survey carried out by the WHO (World Health Organization) life expectancy in Georgia has improved significantly compared to the mid 20th century. Georgia maintained Soviet-style healthcare for years even after the fall of the Soviet Union until 1995. The quality of healthcare and facilities was drastically declined. To increase accessibility and quality of national medical care, in 2013 the government launched the ‘state universal health Care programme’. The idea of the reform was to provide access to a minimum service package for all citizens with no state or private insurance. Nowadays the population of the country is mostly involved in public health insurance programs. Implementation of the modern healthcare system is up-to-date and the stage of the development is efficiently increasing.
Yet out-of-pocket expenditure remains the main obstacle for accessing a huge range of healthcare services. The coverage and efficiency of the medical sector are included in the strategy of improving the healthcare industry in Georgia.
Quality of primary health care in Georgia
Nowadays, a wide range of providers deliver primary health care services all around Georgia. The medical healthcare system is mainly privatized in the country.
Primary health care is playing the leading role in the organization of the healthcare system of the country. It is the first contact between a patient and authorised medical center. After which the patient is coordinated with a specialist of the field he/she needs. Unfortunately, Georgia isn’t among the developed European countries in terms of delivering the high quality primary health care.
The delivered primary health care services currently include: “maternal and child services, immunization, reproductive health, screening, some activities in health promotion and disease prevention at the population and individual levels, basic laboratory tests, diagnostics, palliative care, rehabilitation, psychiatric community-based care and health check-ups“
One of the main disadvantages of the field and a very bad common practise is that primary health doctors (especially in rural areas) are carrying unjustified referrals. This in most cases costs a patient much money and time. In the worst case scenario, specialists treat patients without the specific qualifications. The cases against Georgia on the basis of wrong diagnosis and treatment have appeared in courts as well, even in the European court of human rights.
Sometimes the poor medical resources, including lack of professional medical personnel (nurses for example) , funds and so on create barriers for the medical facilities to function properly.
Positive aspect of the primary health care system in Georgia is that family doctors and specialists are often located in the same facilities which gives an opportunity to get the medical care you need in one premise.
In total, patients can receive primary health services based on his needs but the question is what quality it will be. Hopefully, many mechanisms and reforms are being established for assuring the quality of primary health care.
Delivering medical services in Tbilisi for foreigners
The quality of medical services in Tbilisi are generally good. In the last decade many qualified, well-structured modern hospitals and health centers have been established in Tbilisi. Nowadays receiving quality medical health treatment in a Western Standard hospital with English-speaking doctors is no more a surprise.
Among this list you might find:
- American Medical centers in Georgia – a U.S owned and managed clinic of which provides a 24-hour on-call urgent care, assistance, and specialty care. The clinic is staffed with international and Georgian doctors.
- International Medical Support Services (IMSS) – provides a huge range of primary health services such as: family Medicine,pediatrics, ambulance evacuation, vaccination, on site diagnostics etc.
- MediClub Georgia – delivers an international-standard medical care 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. The services provided include, child screening and family planning, exercise & sport medicine plus 24-hour emergency service
- Medical Center CITO – along with general medical services, the center provides a wide range of laboratory investigations and has “Cito Baby” and “Cito Dent”. All services are available 24/7
Every medical care provider in Georgia functions under control of the Ministry of Labour, Health and Social Affairs.
Medical Service Prices in Georgia
Health expenditure might vary for foreigners without the insurance in the country. The health service prices depend on whether the patient is insured or not. The price of the service is lower when the owners of the hospital turn out to be the insurance companies that have to pay for the service themselves.
The prices suggested to the citizens of Georgia and to the foreigner citizen might vary from service to service and from the hospital to hospital. It is always advised to purchase insurance before visiting a medical center.
You should know the standard prices of the most common services delivered. For example the standard price for a consultation with a family doctor or physicians is 50 GEL maximum.
The prices for primary consultation with specialists depending on the field varies from 60 to 120 GEL.
When it comes to treatment at the clinic, experts say buying individual local insurance is the best solution.
How much does it cost to visit a dentist?
Dental services in Georgia are quite cheap compared to other European countries. Meanwhile, you can find the high quality treatments’ provider very easily.In most cases, the prices for foreigners and nationals don’t vary.
The amount of dental clinics around the city is quite a lot. Depending on personal experience, recommendations on social media etc. you can receive a high quality service.
Affordability of the dental health service is efficient. There is not a big difference between the service fees in the city center located clinics.
Average Costs of services:
- dental stealth – 50-150 GEL
- Dental implants – 750 – 2550 per tooth, cost varies from the material used and amount of teeth.
- Teeth whitening – from 75-100 GEL, price depends on the method used.
- Brackets – per jaw bracket – starting from 750-1000 and goes up to 2500 Gel depending on the purpose of the procedure and the materials used.
Health Insurance in the country of Georgia
Georgian insurance market is quite diverse: there are companies which offer health insurance products only and the ones offering a wide range of services, including health insurance. Some insurance companies provide only corporate health insurance service, for example TBC Insurance and others like Irao and Ardi provide individual health insurance products.
Georgian Insurance Association plays a crucial role in development and well functioning of the market. The biggest role players are the members of the association such as : TBC Insurance, Imedi L, Aldagi, Irao, Hualing Insurance, Ardi etc. The prices of the health insurance policies varies from company to company and the coverage of services plus the amount of the refundable expenditures.
For example at the moment, Ardi suggests products starting from 33 to 88 Gel a month. If a foreigner is going to stay in the country for at least a year he/she is eligible to buy the standardised individual health insurance policy at the mentioned company.
Pharmacies in Tbilisi, Georgia
The Georgian pharmaceutical market is developing rapidly.
Georgia’s local manufacturing sector consists of 70 manufacturers, while two companies : GMP and Aversi own almost 90% of the sector.
The country imports medicament from 92 foreign manufacturers and exports in the Caucasus, Ukraine, Russia , Central Asia, Belarus and Bulgaria and 12 other countries.
The market of the medicines is mainly regulated by the state. The prices are not very cheap in accordance with life expenses in Georgia.
The specific types of medications may be received only with the receipt (antidepressants strong tranquilizers etc)
There are some main competitors on the market such as PSP, Aversi, GPC etc.
Retail sales of medicines, medical health and child care products in Georgia is privatized. Certain public reform initiatives have been suggested to review the private sector of pharmaceuticals. Major key objectives of the reform is to maintain
The store prices are the same for both aliens and Georgian citizens.
Medical Laboratories in Tbilisi
During the breakdown of the Covid-19 having a modern laboratory with equity
infrastructure became outlined objectives in fighting with the disease. Luckily, Georgia has relevant institutions. Among them the Lugar lab has a great impact on the entire process. This facility is one of the leading in Europe.Provision of actions against diseases have been implemented immediately and as a result success rate in the fight against pandemic increased.
Georgia has made a significant effort to adapt modern health policy and reached new developments of the human healthcare system. Even though certain changes have been made there is still a lot to improve. The health systems are facing many challenges starting from the accessibility to medical care to sustainability and accountability of hospitals. Official decision makers are working on a better management of healthcare services.Overall the quality of healthcare in Georgia isn’t drastically bad, what’s more in many aspects the current rates are quite desirable.The aim of the reforms planned is to create a healthcare facilities focused on safety and quality of the services provided, in that case, Georgia has a potential to be the successful leading regional medical tourism destination.
At the end, If you are planning to move to Georgia and need a hand with immigration process, Legal matters, and buying a property in Georgia. We are ready to help you achieve your goal, Schedule a consultation Call now.
If you would like to know more about living in Georgia make sure to read the articles below.