St. Martin Security and Health
The biggest health concern to consider when visiting St. Martin is overexposure to the Caribbean sun, which can lead to painful burns and sunstroke. Some travelers, underestimating the power of the sun's rays even on overcast days, have to spend part of their trips in a St. Martin hospital. To avoid this, doctors recommend using plenty of waterproof sunscreen and keeping in the shade during the hottest hours of the afternoon.
Many visitors to the Caribbean, while ignoring the sun's effect, worry about the quality of water of the islands they are staying on. St. Martin's water is generally safe to drink, bathe in, wash food in, etc., but can become unhealthy directly after large rain storms. In these cases it is best to purchase the bottled water that is always on hand in shops and restaurants.
In case of emergency a visit to a St. Martin hospital may be required. The main St. Martin hospital on the French side, Hospital de Marigot, and the Dutch side, the St. Maarten Medical Center, are modern facilities and should be equipped to handle almost every situation. There are separate ambulatory services for the French and Dutch sides, which should have no trouble transporting patients to their respective St. Martin hospital regardless of where the emergency occurs. For less serious incidents, avoid a trip to a St. Martin hospital and stop in at one of the local pharmacies in Philipsburg or Marigot.
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