In the News from Panama

Philadelphia Hospitals Link with Panama

In a move that demonstrates Panama’s status as an international destination for quality health care, eight hospitals in Philadelphia have signed a deal to collaborate and train with doctors in Panama City.

The deal between the Panama Clinic and the hospitals includes the creation of a direct flight between Philadelphia and Panama City, “and the opportunity for U.S. doctors, residents, and students to be mentored by affiliate physicians from Jamaica, Mexico, the Dominican Republic, and Panama,” according to coverage in the Philadelphia Inquirer.

International-level health care is one of the most important, least-discussed attributes of Panama City. Punta Pacifica, where we are based, is home to a John Hopkins-affiliated hospital and there are top-level facilities throughout the city, meeting international standards with U.S.-trained physicians. Panama ranks among the top medical tourism destinations in the region, according to the Medical Tourism Index.

The Panama Clinic will open new medical offices in May Panama City’s Pacific Center, a 200,000 square meter development which will include a scientific clinic with medical offices and a Marriott Residence Inn hotel. The educational and clinical care exchange will focus on areas of neurology, ophthalmology, cardiology, and telemedicine, with about 10 physicians participating by the end of the year, according to the Inquirer.

“Connecting Philly to an international hub like Panama opens doors of positive economic exchange between both cities,” said Edgar Vesga-Arias, CEO and president for Philadelphia International Medicine.

Both Philadelphia and Panama will benefit from the agreement, Georgia Athanasopulos, the general counsel for Panama in Philadelphia, told the paper. “U.S. doctors could learn to treat tropical diseases, and patients in Panama could receive the care they typically might not be able to afford,” the paper reported.

The hospitals involved are the Fox Chase Cancer Center, Temple University Hospital, Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, Wills Eye Hospital, Rothman Institute, Vincera Institute, Magee Rehabilitation Hospital, and Renfrew Center.