Medical Services

Despite its size and being an under developed country, Costa Rica has positioned itself among the countries with the highest public healthcare development in Latin America.

The Costa Rican Social Security Service (CCSS) is a public service institution that has accomplished important goals regarding health issues, including pensions and social security. This institution offers coverage and integrated health services through two types of insurance:

  • General coverage insurance, with a service that covers 100% of the country.

  • Contribution coverage insurance, with an 86.80% of the population.

Costa Rica is the country in Latin America with the highest life expectancy rate at 77.75 years old; it is also one of the countries with the lowest infant mortality rate: 10.82%. It is also far advanced in issues regarding prenatal prevention and control.


Costa Rica is praised because of its efforts for investment in public education that different governments have accomplished throughout the years. There are close to 6,147 elementary, middle, and high schools and more than 50 universities in the country.

The first higher education institution to be established was the University of Costa Rica, which was the only higher educational center up until the year 1971, when the Technological Institute of Costa Rica was founded.

In 1973, the National University of Heredia (UNA) was founded, also the Distance Education University (UNED) was established in 1977, and in the year 1979, the first private institution known as the Autonomous University of Central America (UACA) was created which set the example in 1986 for a large number of other private universities to open their doors in Costa Rica.

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