Frequently asked questions

When can I send my curriculum vitae to work at the Institute?

The Institute does not receive curriculums; however, you can visit the web page for Human Resources of the Costa Rica University at where external tenders are published, or you can visit the Facebook page of the Institute (, to learn of future job openings.  

Does the Institute lend living snakes for science fairs?

No, this type of practice is no longer done to help protect the animals and the people exposed to these kinds of practices.

Does the Institute offer services for scientific fairs?

It is important for the students to first visit the web page to define which topic they wish to develop. Once this is done, you can send an e-mail to

Is the Institute open for community service?

For more information call 2511-7888.

Is the Serpentarium of the Institute open for visits?

At the moment, the Institute does not have visiting areas. If you wish to learn about snakes you can visit institutions like Mundo de las Serpientes which do have snake exhibitions.

Where can I get material from the Institute?

For more information call 2511-7888 or visit the web page or send an e-mail

Can snakes be brought to the Institute?

For the safety of the people, we recommend not to bring snakes to the Institute. The Fire Department has been trained to help with these types of emergencies. You can reach them by dialing 911.

Where can I buy serum for veterinary use?

The Institute currently distributes the product to different companies. For more information call 2511-7888, 2511-7857 to find the company closest to you.

How long can a patient wait to be treated after a snakebite accident?

There is not a specific amount of time. The patient should be taken as soon as possible to the hospital to be treated and to avoid future physical damages.

Is antivenom serum sold over-the-counter in Costa Rica?

No, the serum can be found only in hospitals, it is a medicinal product that requires careful handling because it can cause allergic reactions which cannot be controlled outside the hospital, so its use is recommended only in medical centers.

What is the production process of antivenoms at the Clodomiro Picado Institute?

The production process involves the immunization of horses with specific poisons so that the animal is not injured. Next, the blood is drawn from the horses and the antibodies are separated and purified in our pharmaceutical plant, to finally obtain a sterile solution of specific horse antibodies against the snake venom.

What are antivenoms?

Antivenoms are preparations of antibodies purified from the plasma of animals, in our case they are specifically from horses, that have been immunized with snake venom. The antivenoms neutralized the poison used in the immunization and some related snakes. They are products of intravenous use and the unique treatment endorsed by the WHO for an ophidian poisoning.