by Ivo Henfling
If you need ambulance services in Costa Rica to get to the hospital, make sure you know your Tico address so the ambulance will know where to find and will not get lost, or ask a local to give the ambulance the address. It's amazing how many people I sold a home in Costa Rica and it took them months to learn their address.
Because we don’t have any street addresses in Costa Rica, some of these hospitals might be a bit difficult for you to find, so it might be easier to call 911 and ask for an ambulance, so they will send a Red Cross ambulance.
If you don’t want to wait for the ambulance just hop in a cab and tell the driver “al hospital más cercano urgentemente por favor”.
When you are picked up by the ambulance, make sure you tell them if you want to be attended at a public hospital or at a private hospital. Customarily, ambulance drivers will take you to a hospital that belongs to the caja.
If you have an INS or other insurance, you migth want to go to a Private hospital like the CIMA or the Clinica Biblica but when registered at the CCSS, you can go to any of the hospitals that we mentioned in our blog about public hospitals.
The Red Cross has branches all over Costa Rica and they give ambulance services all over the country. The Red Cross Costa Rica doesn’t only give ambulance services, they are equipped to take care of medical emergency services and they also do a lot of rescue work in the mountains and on the beaches of Costa Rica, help in fighting forest fires and they’re always present in different events like the tope. They get some help from the government but cover their cost mostly by holding Bingo and handing out the phone book house to house once a year. So give them a financial help when you can.
There are very few private ambulance services in Costa Rica and most function by affiliation.
There are 4 or 5 other ambulance services but they don’t have a website.
You might have the need to be flown in from difficult places outside the Central Valley and if you have private health insurance it is probably better to get you to a private hospital than being attended in the boonies.
GoDutch Realty sells Costa Rica real estate in the Central Valley so we try to give as much important information that you can use when moving to Costa Rica or living in Costa Rica in our blogs. Contact a GoDutch Realty agent to see property in Costa Rica.