For a country that has only started to modernise and offer more developed public services to its people in the past few decades, Oman is fairly well set-up. Its health services are pretty good for a country of its type: by 2009, it was already spending 3% of its GDP on the health sector, and while this might paint a relatively bleak picture of health in Oman if you are coming from a country that spends several times this amount on the same sector, a more in-depth look at the country should reveal that the 3% is being used to good effect.
By 2011, there were almost 2 physicians and 2 beds (in approximate statistics) per 1000 members of the population, which is not a bad ratio at all. The country also came in eighth in the World Health Organisation’s list of countries ranked for health systems, coming far ahead of the US despite its Health expenditures being lower than the US as well as many other countries.
Of course, various criticisms have been presented before about the WHO rankings’ methodological underpinnings, but it cannot be denied that the country of Oman has made great leaps in its healthcare compared to how it used to be about three or four decades ago. There are many big hospitals with modern services and facilities now, such as the capital’s Royal Hospital of Oman as well as the Sultan Qaboos University Hospital in the same city. Naturally, your best bet for reliable healthcare is in the big cities, but this pretty much goes for a lot of other countries too.
Due to the state’s efforts to improve on the health system, most of the previously common communicable diseases have decreased sharply in occurrence within Oman. Of course, you still have to be careful and get the typical vaccinations prior to travelling. It pays too to consult with a travel health agency to find out if the country from which you are coming has any marks against it due to health history: people coming from countries such as Nigeria and Uganda, for instance, are generally required by most other countries to bear vaccinations for yellow fever prior to being permitted entry. To be safe, you should also get a vaccination for typhoid as well as drugs countering malaria—just in case.
It really need not be said any longer, but to be sure: you should also remember to pack any prescriptions you might have when thinking about your health in Oman. Furthermore, avoid drinking tap water: this is not difficult to do since majority of the locals themselves rely on bottled water for their beverages. The food is generally clean, but if you have a delicate constitution, it may be advisable to stay away from the “cruder” stalls on some streets where food and snacks may be peddled. Finally, keep in mind that this is definitely baking hot country, with temperatures of 100 degrees Fahrenheit hitting many places in summer: wear cotton clothes, stay hydrated, and try not to expose yourself to the sun too much, or sunstroke may be the outcome of your recklessness.