Ulaanbaatar - Post Report Question and Answers
Are there any particular health concerns? What is the quality of available medical care? What medical conditions typically require medical evacuation?
Pollution is the main concern. In the summer the air is clean and beautiful but in the winter people burn raw coal to survive so it gets pretty bad. It drastically improved last winter after the introduction of a clean coal law and they hope to keep improving. That said, a pollution mask is still necessary if you're anywhere near the ger districts in the winter. - Sep 2020
Air quality in the winter is bad but improving, by 40% in 2019/2020. Very cold in winters, but majestic summers make up for it. - Aug 2020
The embassy medical unit is fantastic. It is staffed by a US nurse and a fabulous local doctor (pediatrician) and local nurse. That said, there are regular medical evacuations for anything beyond routine care. A new hospital (Intermed) opened last year and medical care seems to be getting better.
Dentistry here is good and cheap.
The biggest health threat is the terrible winter air pollution that is on par with (and sometimes worse than) Beijing and New Delhi during the winter months. See my article in the October 2016 edition of the Foreign Service Journal. It's one of those things you think you are prepared for until you live in i. I will never take clean air for granted again. - Oct 2016
Water quality can be poor so care is needed, and always travel with good stocks of bottled water. Hepatitis C is widespread, with many medical workers infected. - Feb 2015
Local health care is low quality. Mongolians have a lot of health problems. - May 2012
Fair....language is a barrier...SOS has a monopoly and is cash...U.S. prices. - Feb 2012
Mongolia is a developing country with scarce medical services and unreliable transportation, making the provision of timely and adequate medical care challenging. Smog, not fog, also limits visibility and causes delay at the airport and health issues. Medical care in Mongolia is almost a joke. The embassy has an onsite health unit, managed by a U.S. direct-hire who has prescription-writing privileges. Direct-hire women are not permitted to give birth in Mongolia. People have been medevaced to Seoul or Bangkok for emergency medical care. If you break a bone, you'll be medavced, too. X-ray machines and the like are rare here. There is a Korean health clinic that has the latest medical equipment, but I've not been to it. Direct-hires with the embassy are eligible to use the SOS Clinic in Ulaanbaatar. - Feb 2011
Air quality is very, very bad during the long winter. If you get seriously ill, you will need to leave the country to go to Seoul, Bangkok or Singapore for acute care. - Jan 2009
TB and other respiratory diseases are widespread, SOS is ok, and there is a Korean hospital. - Oct 2008