(More) reasons to visit or to move to Lisbon

Lisbon cultural side and the welcoming start-up environment are the recent aspects of this city that have been recognized abroad. The capital of Portugal remains an attractive and trendy destination for tourists, people looking to relocate and entrepeneurs.

Cultural Dynamism

Lisbon got the first place in the “Culture Dynamism” ranking among cities between 500 000 and 1 million inhabitants, part of the “The Culture and Creative Cities Monitor” developed by the European Comission. The report explains how it got the top position: “In recent years, the local authorities have taken new action to strengthen the economic potential of arts, culture and creativity. Co-working spaces, fab labs and start-up incubators are now available in the rehabilitated urban areas. In addition to long-lived international events such as the Lisbon Architecture Triennale, the Lisbon Fashion Week and the Lisbon & Estoril Film Festival, the city has started to host new creativity-related events, such as the European Creative Hubs Forum in 2015, connecting over 200 creative hubs across Europe.

If you are interested in exploring the city, the Guardian leaves you some tips in a recent article:

  • Gulbenkian Museum and the gardens surrounding it, perfect for a relaxed afternoon under the sun.
  • the MAAT, the most recent museum of the city and currently shortlisted in the category “Building of the year” in the World Architecture Festival.
  • flea markets and bric-a-brac stores in different parts of the city.
  • as well as multiple places to eat! Read the full article to learn more! 

Start up environment

In the ranking by “PeoplePerHour”, a large UK-based platform for freelancers, Lisbon comes in fourth place in a world ranking, ahead of cities like San Diego (USA) and London (UK). The ranking evaluates aspects like life quality, cost of offices and easinness to start a new business.

Portugal is also the host city of the reknown WebSummit, “the largest tech conference in the world”, yet another proof of the city’s value for entrepeneurs.

 

 

Hernia Repair Surgery in Portugal

Hernias are a common health issue. They can take years to develop of appear within a short period of time. Either way, hernias always require surgery to get fixed.

Our customer Eugénia Nascimento, from Angola, was among those suffering from hernia who sought the expertise of Dr. Miguel Pinto, a worldwide renown specialist in Hernias. In order to reach Dr. Miguel Pinto, Ms. Nascimento got in touch with Medical Port. We assisted throughout the process of coming to Portugal to eventually get the hernia surgery she needed. The surgery took place at Hospital Lusíadas, a Medical Port partner.

You can learn more about her experience by watching her video:

Read more about hernias in previous posts:

Or visit our website:

Medical Port: Hernia treatment

If you are suffering from an Hernia, you should consult a physician. If, like Ms. Nascimento, you wish to do this procedure in Portugal, let us help you. 

 

Getting a Medical Second Opinion

Looking for a medical second opinion isn’t about mistrusting your doctor, it is about being aware about your health status and alternatives and making informed decisions when faced with a complex diagnosis.

A second opinion can be used to confirm a health condition or to verify the best treatment option for an established diagnosis. As in any other field, errors can happen due to complexity of cases or lack of deep expertise and practice. It’s hard to quantify the number of misdiagnosis, but an often quoted study from the American Journal of Medicine claims the rate of misdiagnosis can vary between less than 5% up to 15%[1], depending on the medical field.

Getting a second opinion is, therefore, a valuable resource. It will guarantee you an external point of view that may see something the previous doctor missed, complement the existing diagnosis with useful details and/or advise on other treatment options. On the contrary, if a second opinion confirms all that has been previously diagnosed, it is also an extra reassurance for the patient.

Click on the image to be redirected to our webpage dedicated to Clínica Universitária de Navarra.

Remote Second Opinion

It is also possible to get a second opinion remotly. At Clínica Universitária de Navarra , one of the best private hospitals in Spain, the doctors will analyse your recent medical exams and medical history and provide you with an evaluation within a maximum period of 15 working days. The doctors also contact you to explain their diagnosis and their opinion about the alternatives you have to deal with your medical condition. Contact us if you wish to get a medical second opinion from Clínica Universitária de Navarra.

 

[1] http://www.amjmed.com/article/S0002-9343(08)00040-5/pdf

What to visit in Portugal this summer

Portugal goes beyond Lisbon, Porto and Algarve. During the last few weeks regions like Alentejo, the Azores and Setúbal have hit the spotlight as well.

Praia dos Galapinhos, Setúbal and Azores

After the city of Oporto was nominated “Best European Destination” , another two distinctions come from the renowned website: Praia dos Galapinhos was elected the most beautiful beach in Europe and the Azores won the category of Best Landscapes.

Praia dos Galapinhos is located in Setúbal, south of Lisbon. Crystal blue water and white sand, sided by green nature. What’s there not to like? The website recommends you to visit not ony this beach but admire all those located in the Nature Park of Setúbal.

Lagoa das Sete Cidades, Azores

Azores, the common name for the group of nine volcanic islands and the highest mountain in Portugal will surely leave anyone impressed. The never ending green landscapes, beautiful lakes, and vulcanoes have granted them the title of most beautiful landscape. Perfect for nature lover travelers.

Alentejo region

Alentejo features among Lonely Planet’s top 10 places to visit in 2017. “Looming clifftop castles, rugged coastlines and a treasure chest of culinary wonders: Portugal’s Alentejo has magnetic allure.” That’s how the Lonely Planet describes the region, adding to the list the different Unesco World Heritage sites in this area, the rolling vineyards and mediaeval village centers.

31st May: World No Tobacco Day

Tobacco contributes to 16% of non-communicable diseases and tobacco-related diseases kill more than 7 million every year.

Today commemorates the World No Tobacco Day, a date that aims to raise awareness of the hazardous effects of tobacco, not only for health, but as well for the environment, and for life quality in general. As the World Health Organisation Director-General Dr Margaret Chan says: “Tobacco threatens us all. Tobacco exacerbates poverty, reduces economic productivity, contributes to poor household food choices, and pollutes indoor air.”

Tobacco is a huge burden on health. On average, smokers lose 15 years of life and almost half of tobacco users will die of tobacco – related causes. Second hand smoke, the smoke produced by cigarettes and smokers than can be inhaled by other people contributes to the death of nearly 1 million people every year.

Tobacco has also a strong impact on economy, by reducing economic productivity and placing a burden on healthcare expenditure. According to the WHO, every year over US$ 1.4 trillion are spent by households and governments worldwide because of tobacco.

Quitting smoking can be a challenge, but it certainly will improve the lives of smokers and their families and friends. If you are living in Portugal and you want to stop smoking, contact us. Medical Port has partnered with a clinic that offers a comprehensive program to quit smoking, involving a multidisciplinary approach covering from psychological support to nutrition and medical follow up.

Source: World Health Organisation (WHO)

Medical Port at the Medical Travel Summit 2017

Medical Port CEO Belén de Vicente was a guest speaker at the Medical Travel Summit in Croatia, an event organized by the International Medical Travel Journal (IMTJ).

The Medical Travel Summit in an event for senior-level professionals working in the medical travel sector and international patients market. Through different panels, guests were invited to share their knowledge and best practices for the future, while addressing the main concerns of this industry.

Belen de Vicente at IMTJ
Photo credit: IMTJ

Belén de Vicente, from Medical Port, presented her experience at the workshop about facilitators. The workshop was moderated by Elizabeth Ziemba, an expert in the industry. Belén de Vicente talked about the added value that medical travel facilitators bring to the parties involved (insurances, clients and healthcare units) as well as upcoming challenges. The knowledge and expertise gathered by Medical Port along its 5 years of operation were also presented.

According to Belén de Vicente “The presentation generated genuine interest among the attendance because in a market that is clearly a niche – against all the forecasts from the international consultancy companies and the American Medical Tourism Association – the experience of the few ones that have been able to sustain and grow their business is extremely relevant”.

The event took place in Croatia from 25 to 27 April and welcomed hundreds of people.

World Immunization Week 2017 – Vaccines are successful

During the “World Immunization Week” the World Health Organization (WHO) raises awareness to the use of vaccines as an effective tool protect against diseases.

Vaccines are seen as one of the most successful and cost-effective ways to prevent diseases and save lives. Every year, between 2 and 3 million deaths are avoided because of vaccination and another 1.5 million could be avoided, according to estimations by the WHO.

 

MD Margaret Chan, WHO’s Director-General, says “nearly 1 in 5 children – worldwide are still missing routine immunizations for preventable diseases, such as diphtheria, pertussis and tetanus.” Increasing access to vaccines is part of the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals established by the United Nations.

The WHO explains that besides providing defenses against for multiple diseases, immunization is “a point of contact for health care at the beginning of life and offers every child the chance at a healthy life from the start.” To learn more about pediatric care, you can visit our website or contact us.

One of the greatest successes of vaccines is the fight against polio, since there has been a decrease of 99% of cases since 1988. In 2016, only 27 cases were reported worldwide. Nowadays, only 3 countries (Afghanistan, Nigeria and Pakistan) remain polio-endemic. Another important achievement is the progress made in reducing measles cases, from 2.6 million, in 1980, to 134 000, in 2015.

Read more about vaccines and immunization week in our previous blog post.

World Immunization Week 2017 – Vaccines Work

Every year, the last week of April aims to raise awareness for immunization. This year topic is “Vaccines Work”.

Vaccines work by acting as “fake” pathogens that carry diseases, prompting a response from the immune system. This way, the body will be ready to act faster if faced with the real disease pathogen in the future. By helping to prevent diseases in the first place, vaccines also limit the antibiotic resistance.

During this action week, the World Health Organization (WHO) aims to raise awareness for the importance of the use of vaccines and clarify some myths regarding them. The five key messages raised by the WHO are:

  1. Vaccines are safe and effective, because they undergo rigorous tests before being given to the population
  2. Vaccines prevent deadly diseases, like measles and mumps. Those who are not vaccinated are more vulnerable to such things
  3. Vaccines provide better immunity than natural infections, because there is less risk involved
  4. Combined vaccines are safe and beneficial and there is no risk associated with receiving multiple vaccines at the same time
  5. If we stop vaccination diseases will return. When less people get vaccinated, even previously eradicated diseases can return (as the recent outbreak of measles in some European countries).

Make sure you and your family are protected against diseases! If you are living in Portugal and away from your country healthcare system, we will help you finding the adequate healthcare you need. Contact us!

 

Sources: WHO, Historyofvaccines.org

Lisbon: the new capital of cool

Lisbon has become very attractive for foreigners looking to run their businesses or just resettle. The Guardian explores examples of the city’s recovery after the economic crisis.

According to this article by the Guardian, Lisbon is a city “of old-fashioned dignity, of arcades and ocean breezes, of the yellow, timber-lined streetcars that get into the tourist pictures, of classical facades maintaining their equilibrium over steep slopes, of delectable cake shops and family-owned seafood restaurants.”

Lisbon, Portugal
Lisbon, Portugal

It is described as cosmopolitan city that brings details from other cities together. Trendy co-working spaces set up in repurposed shipping containers and buses, like Village Underground, with cultural events at the workspace, is one of the examples given that resembles the reality of London. Then, there is the bridge that looks like the Golden Gate one in San Francisco and the city’s own Christ statue that recalls Rio de Janeiro in Brazil.

Lisbon’s safety is also mentioned in the article, along with being a liberal, open minded and “pro-enterprise” city. Those aspects and the fact that it is much cheaper when compared to London makes it an attractive place for “young creative exiles from the British capital” at a time when the Brexit is still characterized by uncertainty. Additionally, since last year and, at least, until 2018, Lisbon is the host city of the Web Summit, “the largest tech conference in the world”, which emphasizes the city’s innovative side.

Portugal as a whole is more and more attractive to tourists, foreign professionals looking to move and individuals looking to retire abroad. Even during the so-called “low season” of tourism, the numbers of visitors have been continuously increasing, not only in Lisbon but also in other regions like the North region and the Azores islands.

If you are looking to spend some time in Portugal, let us take care of your healthcare needs. Visit our website or contact us for more information.

 

March 24th: World Tuberculosis Day

World Tuberculosis day aims to raise awareness to the epidemic of tuberculosis, a disease that in 2015 affected more than 10 millions people worldwide. The theme for this year is “Unite to End TB”.

Tuberculosis (TB) is a bacterial infection that affects mostly the lungs, though it is possible to affect other parts of the body. While it is considered a serious condition, it can be treated with antibiotics. This date commemorates the day, back in 1882, when Dr. Robert Koch announced the discovery of the virus that causes tuberculosis.

According to the WHO, tuberculosis is often overlooked because is hard to be diagnosed. Symptoms can include cough that lasts longer than 3 weeks (with phlegm that can have blood), weight loss, night sweats, fever, fatigue and loss of appetite.

TB occurs in every part of the world but the majority of cases are concentrated in Asia (61%) and Africa (26%). In countries with a few registered cases, TB affects mostly vulnerable individuals in social risk, like people with alcohol and drug problems or homeless people. TB affects particularly people who are infected with the HIV virus, as both infections speed up each other’s progression.

As in most health conditions, an early and proper diagnosis is the key to a better, faster recovery. Delaying treatment can lead to long-term health issues.

Source: WHO, CDC, StopTB, NHS