Getting Health Insurance in Uruguay – update from a major study

US National Institutes of Health - Online Library LogoWe’ll have a new post in our ongoing series, Getting Health Insurance in Uruguay, later this week. I’ve just been reading over a number of definitive sources, including a major analysis published by Mexico’s Public Health agency. They’ve been doing a series of reports on the health systems of other Latin American countries. The Uruguay study was published in 2011, from data in 2009, after Uruguay’s Health Care Reform law came into effect. It gives much more detail about the three tiered system of Uruguayan health care I mentioned our Part 1 and Part 2 posts.

The formal report, Sistema de Salud en Uruguay, is in Spanish. I’ve been reading it in both the original and in two alternate machine translations. Will have links, and our perspective here at Uruguay Expat Life / Uruguay For Me, coming up this week.  Meanwhile for an overview, here is the abstract, in English, at the US National Institutes of Health website. If you’d like to read the original, it’s here for free at SciElo.

As a sampler, did you know that over 50% of the population here (including me and Lisa Marie Mercer) choose the cooperative, “mutualista” system of paid by social security payroll tax, or voluntary buy-in (for all of about $85 US monthly per person), and 37% are in the fully-subsidized Public Health tier? Only 2% go for the Private system. The rest are covered either by the military, or some other organizational-specific system.

If you read the typical “Institutional Expat” blogs, forums, websites, Facebook groups, you may get the impression that only the Private system is any good. Or worse, that the only thing worth having is some kind of special “Expat Cover”. Baloney! (and malarkey too). Continue reading Getting Health Insurance in Uruguay – update from a major study