Hospitals in the Maldives

Maldives atoll hospitals

As we prepare for our 21st visit to the Maldives, we aren’t getting any younger. Now in our mid-sixties, battling an incessant array of health issues seems to be a new avocation in this chapter of our lives. So we are more empathetic to the prospective visitors who enquire about the access to emergency medical care (eg. parents with very young children, or anyone with a long-term health condition). Most (at least 5 star) resorts have resident doctors. For those looking for more extensive medical facilities, the conventional answer in the past would be to look at the Male atoll properties for ready access to the country’s main hospital in Male. But in recent years, tourism-funded growth has funded hospitals in many of the big atolls:

  • Health care facilities in Maldives are ameliorating on a daily basis. The Indira Gandhi Memorial Hospital in Male’ is the biggest hospital in Maldives furnishing advanced medical care. Besides the Indira Gandhi Memorial Hospital in Male’ there is ADK Hospital which is one of the biggest private healthcare establishments in the Maldives. It is having fifty (50) bed private tertiary acute care hospital, furnishing a wide ambit of medical and surgical facilities for the total management of patients situated in the capital city of Maldives – Male’. In addition to these healthcare hospitals in Male’, there are four regional hospitals situated in the north, south and the central parts of Maldives to provide the best and quality health care services in the rural population of Maldives. The four regional hospitals of Maldives are Hithadhoo located in Addu Atoll of southern atolls, Haa Dhaalu Kulhuduffushi, Raa Atoll Ungoofaaru in northern atolls and Meemu Atoll Muli (central atolls)

When we visited Jumeirah Dhevanafushi (now Raffles Meradhoo), the GM highlighted the proximity of the Gaafu ALifu hospital to the island and the fact that the GM had met with the hospital to coordinate care protocols if a guest needed medical attention. While notable, I didn’t think this distinctive measure quite merited its own “Best of the Maldives” post, but I thought it would be good to call out those resorts closest to each of the major atoll hospitals:

  • Male (Male) – Kurumba (3 km)
  • Hithadhoo (Addu) – Equator Village (10km – but all on land)
  • Kulhuduffushi (Haa Dhaalu) – Barefoot (15 km – coming)
  • Ungoofaaru (Raa) – Loama at Maamagili (14 km)
  • Muli (Meemu) – Medhufushi (3km)

Addu hospital

Best of the Maldives: Repeater Welcome – Sun Siyam Vilu Reef

The Maldives resorts are renowned for their abundant hospitality which starts the moment you step off the boat onto the island jetty. These welcomes are often amped up a bit more for repeaters with some extra treats or gestures. I’ve seen dozens of these
greetings and goodies, but none nearly as extravagant at Sun Siyam Vilu Reef ‘s.

Now this repeater welcome was a bit exceptional in its own right as it was honouring a guest, nicknamed “Mama”, who was arriving for her 41st visit! The extravaganza included:

  1. Decorated dhoni
  2. Decorated buggy
  3. Flowers
  4. Boduberu parade
  5. Staff tshirts with her name on them
  6. Villa number changed to “Home Sweet Home”
  7. Villa name changed
  8. Welcome parade
  9. Welcome sign
  10. Welcome bodberu performance

Now this might seem perhaps an anomaly for this exceptional visitor, but Lori and I also received much of this treatment ourselves and we saw many other guests receive various samplings of the above.

Best of the Maldives: Compote – Sun Siyam Iru Veli

Sun Siyam Iruveli - compote

Fresh fruit abounds on the Maldives breakfast buffets, but sometimes you want something a little sweeter and spreadable. There are jams and marmalades a plenty as well, but a compote is that happy medium between fruit and conserves. You can add it to your toast, pancakes, waffles, cereal, etc. My favourite is adding compote to my morning yogurt (“breakfast dessert”). And the widest selection of compotes I have come across is Sun Siyam Iru Veli whose buffet selection included:

  • Dragon Berry
  • Sweet Melon
  • Orange
  • Prunes
  • Plum
  • Passion Fruit
  • Pineapple
  • Mango
  • Kiwi

Best of the Maldives: Summer Art Camp – Joali

Joali - art camp

Joali is the artistic epicentre of the Maldives with its art-themed resort, and now it is training the next generation of artists who might someday grace the property with their own works:

  • “The first and only art-immersive resort in the Maldives announces its 2024 Kids Summer Camp, taking place during 1 July through 31 August 2024. Surrounded by pristine white-sand beaches, brilliant blue waters and an island-wide art collection of one-of-a-kind installations and experiential pieces, JOALI Maldives Kids Summer Camp will spark creativity and allow kids’ imaginations to soar. Bringing families and young explorers on an unforgettable journey of artistic expression and learning in a breathtaking setting, the island will be joined by world-renowned artists who will further guide, inspire and educate throughout the summer.”

A world beyond the plastic gimp bracelets and Flintstone-like clay ashtrays I made at camp!

Best of the Maldives: Accessibility Extra – Amilla Maldives

Amilla - accesibility

  • “Our team have undergone diversity and inclusion training to ensure we treat guests with respect, fostering an inclusive and welcoming atmosphere for all. We are progressively learning how to genuinely cater to a diverse range of needs and disabilities.”

Amilla Maldives is a veritable catalogue of the ideal accessibility for a tropical resort. I’ve already highlighted a number of prominent accessibility initiatives and features at Amilla, but I’ve decided to add this post to cover all of the smaller (but just as helpful) touches that they just keep adding:

  • Transfer Boards – For assisting mobility impaired individuals from transferring from chairs to beds, treatment tables, etc.
  • Hidden Disability -Training for managing disabilities that are not readily apparent.
  • Autism – Can accommodate sensitivities to light and sound, as well as manage the visit to hep with unforeseen triggers.
  • Hearing Impairment – Portable hearing loop. Flashing lights on fire and emergency alarms and can organise a member of staff to fetch you from your villa during an emergency if requested in advance.
  • Dysphagia – Expertise in tailoring menus for those with swallowing difficulties.
  • Visual Impairment – Digital menus with clear and bright displays with enlargeable text.
  • Evac Chair – To facilitate evacuation from villa or island.

Top 10 Maldives Vibe Films

Are you missing (or anticipating) that deserted tropical island vibe? Or looking for something to pass the time while a rainstorm passes through your resort? Or perhaps something to watch on the popular outdoor films with your toes in the warm sand, the gentle ocean breezes as your aircon and the stars as overhead. Here is my list for the top ten films with the Maldives vibe (in chronological order of earliest release date)…

1. Treasure Island (1918/1934/1950/1972/1982/1990/1996) – the original film (and book), check out this comparison. [above]

2. Adventures of Robinson Crusoe (1954/1997) – iconic with many eponymous villas and excursions

3. Swiss Family Robinson (1960) – the classic deserted island film and Soneva design aesthetic

4. Lord of the Flies (1963/1990) – dystopia in paradise

5. Island of the Blue Dolphins (1964) – youthful adventure

6. Blue Lagoon (1980) – also eponymous

7. Shipwrecked (1990) – pirate treasure and youthful adventure

8. The Red Turtle (2016) – fantastical animated tales about one of the favourite creatures in the Maldives

9. Sweetheart (2019) – aka.Monster of the Blue Lagoon

10. Cast Away (2000) – the ultimate deserted island flick