Health in Barbados
Local healthcare services in Barbados are easily accessible and of a high standard.
There are two main hospitals on the island, various medical centres, well-equipped private and public clinics, medical laboratories, pharmacies, and a large number of private doctors in practice.
The government-run Queen Elizabeth Hospital (QEH) has 600 beds and offers emergency services as well as provides the Caribbean region with specialised clinical services in surgery, paediatrics and obstetrics, radiology, and psychiatry, just to name a few.
Located in the island’s capital of Bridgetown, the QEH doubles as an accredited teaching hospital, affiliated with the University of the West Indies (UWI), offering pre-clinical training and internships for medical graduates, both local and international.
You can read all about what the QEH has to offer (as well as loads more healthcare information) on our Hospitals and Clinics page or contact the main QEH switchboard on (246) 436-6450.
The second largest healthcare facility is the much smaller and privately-run BayView Hospital, located just on the outskirts of Bridgetown.
BayView also offers numerous speciality services in a number of fields, but just on a much smaller scale. Some of the services include (but are not limited to) ENT Surgery, Neurology, Cosmetic and Reconstructive Surgery, Obstetrics and Gynaecology, and even spiritual services.
BayView offers both private and shared room accommodation and pride themselves on personalized care and a ‘home away from home‘ atmosphere.
For more information, see our BayView Hospital page.
Supporting the two hospitals are government-run Polyclinics dotted all over the island providing free medical treatment for minor and general health ailments.
There are also private medical clinics, including the Sandy Crest Medical Centre (www.sandycrest.net) on the west coast, and the FMH Emergency Medical Clinic, just outside Bridgetown in the parish of St. Michael.
Need to know more? Refer to our pages on Health for a more detailed description of local facilities, health practitioners, and for a list of island pharmacies.
You can also see our Settling in at Home page for more Barbados health information.
Barbados Health – The Facts …
Barbados ranks well in most global health indexes.
The 2013 Human Development Report UNDP Human Development Index (HDI) places Barbados 38th of 187 countries surveyed, which included both developing and developed nations.
The HDI measures development by combining indicators of life expectancy, education attainment, and income. This statistic is something Bajans are proud of and is encouraging for all who live on the island now and into the future.
According to the 2012 World Bank Data, the life expectancy at birth in Barbados is 75 years old.
Additional Healthcare Information
Specialist services island-wide include chiropractic, acupuncture and reflexology treatments, amongst others, and with the growing interest in non-traditional treatment methods, there are also many alternative health practitioners all over the island offering services such as herbal medicine, life coaching and Reiki practice.
Barbados is also home to the Barbados Psychiatric Hospital, located in Black Rock in the parish of St. Michael.
The Psychiatric Hospital provides both in-patient and out-patient services and offers physical and psychiatric medical services, day programs, specialized professional services (social work, psychology, psychotherapy, occupational therapy), rehabilitative services as well as community outreach services to raise awareness on mental health issues.
In addition, Barbados operates a string of government-funded Geriatric centres that provide care for the aging Barbadian population.
The Barbados Ministry of Health also operates the Barbados Drug Service (BDS) who aim to provide affordable, quality drugs and pharmaceuticals to the Barbadian community.
For more information on the BDS, visit http://drugservice.health.gov.bb or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Author: Brett Callaghan