Quick guide to Europe Healthcare for expats Expat

Quick guide to Europe Healthcare for expats

For expatsHealth care is an integral part of moving to the goals of your dreams. If you plan Relocation to a European locationyou need to do thorough research before completing it. Health care is of a high standard in most European countries. There is no doubt that Europe offers some of the best health care options for residents and expats.

Expats in Europe should ideally take out private health insurance or include this in their move package. Eligibility for state health care through citizenship or residence may be an option, but may not be available depending on residence and visa status. Regardless of where you plan to move to Europe, make sure you get adequate medical care, especially before you enter the country. While you may think that health care in Europe is free for expats, this is generally not the case.

Try to find out if your selected European travel destinations offer quality health care and adequate private and public services. Also check the cost of various treatments and waiting times in public hospitals. To make it easier for you, here is a list of the four main health systems in Europe for expats.

Health care for expats in Europe


The health care system in France has always been fantastic with impeccable services, shorter waiting times and professional staff thanks to adequate government funds. The system was further improved when the “Protection Universelle Maladie” (PUMA) was introduced in early 2016. PUMA enables residents and expats to access public health care in the right way. In order to participate in this program, expats must live in the country for at least three consecutive months. They should be legally resident legally, which means that they should live in France for at least 183 days a year.

There may be certain exclusions for pensioners. Therefore, find out in detail about the PUMA restrictions for pensioners before you plan to move. The French public health system is not free; However, it is not as expensive as private healthcare. All you have to do is make a monthly payment to access health facilities that offer huge discounts, as the prices set by the government are quite reasonable. We have provided global healthcare to many expats and international citizens living in France.

Health care for expats in Europe


The German health care system is robust, and therefore the life expectancy figures in the country are commendable. The doctor-to-patient rate is also very high, making it one of the best healthcare systems in Europe. Everyone in the country, including expats with a residence permit, must have health insurance.

You also need a valid medical certificate from a doctor in Germany and sufficient health insurance to receive a residence permit. As an expat, you should choose a licensed insurer to insure yourself and your family. There is a fixed fee for using the mandatory state health care system. However, this fee is usually paid by employers. Expats can opt for comprehensive insurance coverage for advanced or complex medical treatments.

Health care for expats in Europe

Great Britain

In the UK, expats can have access to public health care or basic NHS (National Health Service) care. If you plan to stay in the UK on a visa that lasts longer than six months, you will have to pay £ 200 as a health supplement for immigration when applying for a visa. The additional fee for students is £ 150. However, the NHS also has some shortcomings. Secondary care is not included in the system, and you will have to pay some fees for dental care, eye care, and prescription medication.

In most cases, expats opt for additional coverage such as international health insurance to avoid the long waiting times associated with NHS and to get better care in private hospitals. With private health care, expats can also get private rooms, treatments from specialists and advanced facilities – all with little or no waiting.

Madrid, Spain


According to a WHO report, the Spanish health system ranks 7th worldwide. It is not surprising to see that 99% of the population has health insurance. Almost 90% of people use the public health system, while 19% of people (mainly expats) opt for private health care. There are hospitals in Spain that are equipped with the latest technologies and diagnostic systems.

The public system is excellent; However, waiting times for operations and specialist appointments can be very frustrating. Unfortunately, the waiting time for non-urgent medical interventions has increased dramatically in recent years. These are the reasons why expats seek private care through international health insurance. In addition to the much-needed convenience and privacy, there are Spanish insurance plans that also offer dental protection. Dental care can be very expensive if you have to pay out of your pocket.

Health care for expats in Europe

It is important to note that all countries of the European Union and some other non-EU countries offer their citizens EHIC (European Health Insurance Card). For expats with private health insurance, opting for private healthcare facilities may be the best choice. Opt for international health insurance for maximum coverage during your stay in Europe. We also encourage future and current global citizens to download our new international health insurance guide for useful tips and important information you need when buying global health insurance.

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