Taken directly from Ian Youngman's iPMI report, International Health Insurance 2023, in this article we look at the healthcare system in Argentina, including expatriate healthcare insurance, insurers present, and expatriate numbers. The International Health Insurance report 2023 contains a further 176 country profiles. To learn more about global healthcare systems, read the full report, click here.
- 2023 population 45.6 million.
- 2030 population estimate 48.8 million.
- 2019 UN international migrants IN 2.2 million.
- 2019 UN international migrants OUT 1 million.
- 2020 UN refugees 3900.
- Global diaspora 1 million.
- Expats in country 400,000.
The economy of Argentina is Latin America's third largest and the second largest in South America behind Brazil.
The country is one of the world's largest agricultural producers.
The country benefits from rich natural resources, a highly literate population, and a diversified industrial base.
The economy is being liberalised.
Medical care in Buenos Aires is generally good.
Quality and availability of treatment can vary outside the capital.
Medical facilities are good but can be expensive. Public hospitals tend to be crowded.
Public hospitals offer free clinical care for hospital inpatients and outpatients.
A charge is made to outpatients for medicines.
The public sector covers 50% of the population.
The Ministry of Health runs a network of hospitals and clinics offering free inpatient and outpatient treatment to people without health insurance-this is funded by general taxation.
Healthcare for expatriates
Foreign nationals have to pay for private care.
Argentina has a Digital Nomad Visa for 180 days with extension of 180 days. Details are awaited.
Ministry of Health is the national regulator but there is a host of state and city regulators that have their own regulations.
Healthcare price regulation
State health insurance
Healthcare is free to citizens under Universal Health Coverage (CUS).
The CUS seeks that all individuals, especially the most vulnerable, have access to the services they need throughout their life.
People must be registered to get free healthcare at public hospitals.
There are special free healthcare schemes for the poor and retired; Plan Remediar and Programa de Atencion Medica Integral (PAMI). Paid for by general tax revenue and aid from the American Development Bank.
Plan Nacer is a state health insurance scheme giving free care to mothers and children. More than a million children and pregnant women are now covered.
State health insurance top up
Insurers offer private health insurance and health cash plans to groups and individuals as a top up to a public sector scheme.
Compulsory health insurance for locals
Compulsory health insurance for expatriates
Compulsory health insurance for overseas students
Health insurance for locals overseas
Private health insurance
Trade unions, professional associations and employers provide social insurance trusts called Obras Sociales. The National Social Security Administration and Superintendent of Health Services supervise them but don’t run them.
They cover employees and their families for full health care, although usually not dental care or psychiatric treatment.
They are a pay as you go system funded by employers and employees via compulsory payroll deduction; employers pay 6 % of wages, and employees pay 3%.
There are 300 mutual or social plans.
The mutual covers the cost of medical care and medicines in varying proportions; the patient pays differences between the fixed fee and the actual cost of treatment.
In the past, these plans have usually covered around 45% of the population, although the percentage has fallen recently due to increasing unemployment – with more people resorting to provision within the public sector.
Insurers offer private health insurance and health cash plans to groups and individuals.
Cover can be full or as a top up to a public sector scheme.
Several of the larger private hospitals and health care groups, such as the British Hospital, offer their own health plan.
These health plans often offer more flexible payments, discounts and easier access to medical services.
The private sector covers around 5% of the population and this is mostly on a self-pay basis. Insurance company and broker regulators
SSN- the National Insurance Superintendence (Insurance Superintendence) regulates insurance companies, brokers and agents.
Health insurance regulation
Health insurance price regulation
Countries where expats come from
Recent immigration has mostly been from Bolivia and Paraguay, with smaller numbers from Peru, Ecuador and 200,000 from Venezuela.
Argentina is increasingly becoming a popular expatriate destination and it is particularly appealing to US retirees, with small numbers from the UK, Spain and Germany.
8300 are from the UK.
Leading local health insurers
Head office of leading health insurers and brokers
International health insurers/ brokers/agents present:
Allianz Partners with Allianz Care has a local office in Buenos Aires. Allianz Global Benefits has a local office in Buenos Aires.
Allianz Argentina Compañía de Seguros and AGF Allianz Argentina Compañía de Seguros Generales are both based in Buenos Aires. Allianz Argentina does offer health insurance locally.
Axa does not offer local health insurance here.
Chubb partners with Betterfly on company benefits and future plans include supplemental health.
Generali does not offer health insurance here.
MAPFRE does not offer health insurance.
Met Life offers, health cash and cancer products direct and via banks, brokers and agents.
QBE does not write health insurance.
Starr does not offer health insurance.
WTW brokers individual and group PMI, IPMI, health cash, dental and employee benefits.
Zurich does not write health insurance here.