Health Service Providers in Colombia

The system of HealthCare in Colombia, is really very hit and miss, unless you take out Private Insurance. I have been extremely lucky, when I first came to Colombia I was assigned to Comfenalco, who were brilliant, but later decided to withdraw from the EPS (National Health Service), I was then assigned to SURA, who although not as good, have provided a decent service, and at the moment I have both an Excellent Family Doctor and Specialists, but that could change at any time, as they move on, I also pay extra each month for a top up Plan, which gives me direct access to Specialists, and other benefits, that has certainly paid for itself.

My Mother-in-law on the other hand is with a different Provider, and they are abysmal, we tried to change her over to SURA but because she was already being treated for High Blood Pressure, they wont let her move, unless her Service Provider goes to the wall, which is a possibility.

She has been waiting for Surgery to her foot, now it is over two months, the Service Provider had the paperwork, and was supposed to send it to the Company contracted to perform the surgery, at first it was not sent, then the Contractor said they hadn\’t received it, but it turned out they had. She had her pre operation tests, then heard no more. When the mother in law eventually saw the Anaesthetist he said she would hear from them within a week, with a date, the surgery would be five days later as she had to stop taking aspirin, again all went quiet, the problem with this is that no one answers the phone, so it means a trip into the City to find out what is going on. As a result yesterday, she received a call from a Nurse to say the Operation is on Wednesday, she queried this as it was only two days, and she is still on aspirin, the Nurse said she would speak to the Anaesthetist and confirm it with her, up until now, she has heard nothing, and the appoointment is tomorrow, does she go or not, in my opinion they need to find out, otherwise she could be waiting another six months or more.

The state of the Health Service is going downhill, mainly because of corruption, much of the money paid to the Providers, has been syphoned off by the Bosses into their own pockets, as a result the standard of care leaves a lot to be desired, this is not helped by the Government in the last month removing a number of medications provided by the EPS, and these are medications for serious ailments, cancer and arthritis being just two, if these are needed, people will have to pay for them themselves. Instead of going after the corrupt people stealing the funds, they are penalising the patients.

The problem as I see it, is an ever revolving circle, because the people responsible for stealing the money are Mates with the Politicians who could stop them, but because the Politicians themselves are syphoning off funds for themselves from elsewhere, they can\’t do anything, for fear of being exposed themselves… How to break that circle.


I had a feeling in my water something like this was going to happen, this morning my Mother in law received a call, to say her appointment has been cancelled, rather than confirm the details with the Anaesthetist, they gave her appointment to someone else, and now she has to wait again…They are an absolute disgrace.

Published by Phil Sale

I moved to Colombia from Spain in 2012, and I am happily married to a Colombiana.

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