Chile Health Care and Vaccinations
Getting access to quality medical care in Chile is possible in the larger cities such as Valparaiso and Santiago. Travellers are advised to take out comprehensive health insurance before travelling. Emergency services can be dialled free - call 131 for an ambulance. For medical emergencies, private services may deliver more modern equipment and a faster response. Clínicas (private hospitals) can be contacted directly in the case of a medical emergency. If bringing medication, then make sure to have a signed note from the doctor stating medical conditions.
Food and Drink
Standards of hygiene are generally reasonable in Chile, and should not cause visitors any undue concern. Tap water in the cities is fine to drink but it does have a high mineral content and may taste different to what you're used to. Bottled water is easily available should you prefer to stick to that. When it comes to eating out, use common sense – only eat food that has been freshly cooked and looks to have been prepared in hygienic conditions.
Vaccinations against tuberculosis and hepatitis B are sometimes recommended. When travelling to rural parts of Chile, care should be taken to avoid the hantavirus, a potentially fatal condition that is spread by rodents. In particular, avoid resting near tall grasses or haystacks, don't leave food sources lying around and make sure rustic cabins are well aired out and free from any sign of rodents.