What is healthcare in South Africa like?

Facilities and Health Information:

Private medical facilities are good in urban areas and in the vicinity of game parks, but they may be limited elsewhere. Pharmacies are well-stocked, and equivalents to most American medicines are available. However, travelers taking specific medications should bring an adequate supply for their entire stay and a prescription with them. Nearly all private South African hospitals are owned by one of the following three corporations:

Life Health Care (http://www.lifehealthcare.co.za/),

NetCare ( http://www.netcare.co.za/live/netcare_index.php ), or

Mediclinic ( http://www.mediclinic.co.za/Pages/default.aspx ).

Information about locating private hospitals can be obtained by accessing these companies’ websites.

While most of South Africa is malaria-free, malaria risk exists throughout the year in rural low-altitude areas of Limpopo and Mpumalanga provinces, including Kruger National Park and neighboring game reserves. Risk also exists in the coastal lowlands of KwaZulu-Natal north of the Tugela River (including in Zululand, but excluding urban areas of Richards Bay). Risk is much lower from June to September. Visitors should prepare accordingly and use malaria prophylaxis and mosquito repellent. For information on malaria, its prevention, protection from insect bites, and anti-malarial drugs, please visit the CDC's malaria web page.

Tuberculosis is an increasingly serious health concern in South Africa.

Drinking Water Source - % of rural population improved"

88.3%

Drinking Water Source - % of total population unimproved:

4.9%

Drinking Water Source - % of urban population improved:

99.2%

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:

17.8%

Hospital Bed Density - beds/1,000 population:

2.8

People Living with HIV/AIDS:

5,600,000

Physicians Density - physicians/1,000 population:

.76

Sanitation Facility Access - % of total population unimproved:

25.6%

Sanitation Facility Access - % of urban population improved:

81.7%

Sanitation Facitlity Access - % of rural population improved:

62.4%

Infectious Diseases - degree of risk:

intermediate

Food or Waterborne Disease (s):

bacterial diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever

Water contact disease (s):

schistosomiasis

Disability Access In South Africa

Accessibility:

While in South Africa, U.S. citizens with disabilities may find accessibility and accommodation very different from what is found in the United States. South African law mandates access to buildings for persons with disabilities, but these laws are rarely enforced. Even in government buildings, it is not unusual to encounter entrances with multiple stairs and elevators that have not been operational for some time, and many private businesses are no different. However, many of the tourist attractions, along with restaurants near the tourist attractions, are somewhat better-equipped with ramps and other options to facilitate access. If you are a traveler with a disability, you should plan ahead to ensure that your lodging and planned activities are able to accommodate any special requirements.

Disclaimer

You are responsible for ensuring that you meet and comply with foreign entry requirements, health requirements and that you possess the appropriate travel documents. Information provided is subject to change without notice. One should confirm content prior to traveling from other reliable sources. Information published on this website may contain errors. You travel at your own risk and no warranties or guarantees are provided by us.

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