If you are in need of an ambulance, you can call the general emergency number 117.
There are also other groups or units who provide emergency care services:
Emergency care services are available in both private and public hospitals. A triage nurse prioritizes all patients on arrival but waiting times can be long depending on the number of emergency cases. Note that PhilHealth will only pay for emergency cases that are confined in accredited facilities for not less than 24 hours. You will have to shoulder all costs if you were in the hospital for less than 24 hours.
For minor or non-life threatening illnesses, call your doctor. There are also services that offer on-call doctors:
Here is a list of hospitals:
Pharmacies (or drug stores) can be found anywhere in Manila. Business hours are Monday to Friday 7:00 to 19:00. Some branches are open on weekends for the same hours. The opening hours of drug stores are usually posted on their doors. Pharmacies can also be found inside malls and most have the same opening hours as mall hours.
Medicines commonly available over the counter are pain relievers, decongestants, vitamins and the like. All other medicines such as antibiotics require a doctor's prescription. It is recommended to get the generic variant of the medicine you are purchasing since it is cheaper but has the same quality as its branded counterpart.
Some well-known and reliable drug stores include:
You can find store locators for each drug store on their website. Mercury Drug has 24 hour branches within Manila.
With so much to deal with before leaving your home country, (taxes, moving house, paperwork etc.) the careful planning of your expatriation to Manila is an essential step. As far as healthcare is concerned, your local social security scheme won’t be accompanying you to your host country and, once abroad, you might be surprised by the care system you find in Philippines. So, before leaving, make sure you have appropriate cover!
EasyExpat.com works in partnership with APRIL International to provide specific insurance solutions for travelling or staying outside your country of nationality.
Designed for either short or long stays, APRIL International’s insurance policies offer protection against any problems that might arise before departure or during your time in Philippines: cancelling your trip, medical expenses following an illness or accident, needing to be repatriated, causing damage to a third party or losing your luggage.