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Features of treatment in the EU countries: how and where to be treated with an EU passport

Many nowadays are eager to go abroad, both with short-term visits and for a long time. Naturally, travelers and immigrants are interested in the possibility of obtaining high-quality medical care, if they need it.

Many people are afraid that they simply will not be able to afford to see a doctor, because of extremely expensive medical services. The reason for such fears lies in the propaganda, which told about our free medicine, and about the fact that high-quality treatment in Europe, America and other developed countries is available only to the rich. Later it turned out that free medicine is not able to cure diseases that have been successfully treated in paid clinics for a long time.

Nevertheless, immigrants still have concerns about their own and family’s health. Since the main immigration flows are directed to the European Union, we will find out how the situation is with the provision of medical care in European countries.

Features of treatment in Europe

Treatment in the European Union is carried out on a paid basis. That is, clinics provide services, use medicines and receive payment for the entire range of measures. However, this does not mean that citizens of European countries fully cover medical expenses out of their own pocket.

The European Union does not have a single legislation, and the medical care of the local population is carried out according to the laws of specific states. Usually, the entire population of the state participates in compulsory health insurance programs. At the expense of mandatory medical insurance, at least 40-50% of hospital bills are covered. In addition, citizens can enter into additional voluntary health insurance contracts. There are also various charitable foundations that support free hospitals or pay for treatment for those in need. In some European countries, medicine is actually free for local residents.

Foreigners are another matter. Everyone who has received visas to the EU knows that one of the requirements for their registration is the availability of a medical insurance policy that is valid in Europe and has coverage of at least 30 thousand euros. A foreign tourist in Europe can count on these 30 thousand. You just need to understand that travel policies are cheap and cover only emergency cases. To go on an excursion to Europe and at the same time cure a chronic disease there at the expense of the policy will not work.

Those who go to European clinics for treatment have to pay their bills out of their own funds in full. We must admit that the cost of treatment in other paid clinics is quite comparable to the cost of treatment in Europe. Sometimes it is even more expensive to be treated at home. In all cases, the equipment in Europe is better, and the level of service is higher.

How can we ensure that a foreigner who is in Europe does not worry about the fact that in case of illness or injury he will not be able to be treated? There are two ways to solve this problem:

  • Purchase a voluntary health insurance policy. Insurers have a lot of programs. They differ in the cost and what exactly is considered an insured event. In any case, it will not be possible to treat an existing disease at the expense of the insurer.
  • Legalize in Europe. Legalization is carried out by obtaining a residence permit, permanent residence, citizenship or registration of refugee status. Persons who have issued any of these documents have the right to receive medical care equal to the rights of citizens of the country. That is, if in a particular state 50% of the price of treatment is paid by the government, then this rule applies not only to citizens, but also to all legalized foreigners. You should not go to Europe for illegal earnings. In case of health problems, such migrants often do not receive any assistance.

The best medicine in Europe

The level of development of medicine and the possibility of receiving medical care, in whole or in part, at the expense of the state, are different in different countries of the European Union. In general, in the old democracies of Europe, the quality of medicine is higher. In the countries of Eastern Europe, medical equipment and the level of training of doctors are usually inferior to Western countries. As for access to fully or partially free medicine, it depends both on the wealth of a particular EU member and on the policy pursued by its government. Some states seek to make medical services affordable, while others seek to ensure a high level of income, believing that rich citizens will be able to pay for medical care on their own.

The best countries in terms of the level of development of medicine are considered to be:


German clinics are considered the most innovative and high-quality in Europe. All medical institutions are equipped with the most modern equipment and are staffed with highly qualified personnel. In the country, about 45% of medical institutions are privately owned, which leads to a high level of competition and an increase in the quality of services. Treatment in Germany will cost a visiting foreigner dearly. A legalized foreigner who has insurance can count on covering even large operations, such as, for example, joint replacement, at its expense.


One of the richest and most developed European countries. The equipment and staff of the clinics are beyond criticism. There is a powerful industry for the development and production of the most modern medicines. Citizens of the country and legalized foreigners, part of the treatment is paid by the state. The remaining part is usually covered by a medical insurance policy, the purchase of which is mandatory.


Sweden is a socially oriented country, which even allows us to talk about the Swedish model of socialism. Medicine, for legal residents of the country, is actually free. The costs are borne by the state and municipalities. The patient pays symbolic amounts. At the same time, there is a restriction that does not allow taking more than 100 euros per one patient per year. Those who have come across clinics in the CIS, perfectly understand that it is really free. The quality of the clinics ‘ equipment and the level of staff training do not cause any complaints.


Along with French, Italian medicine is considered the best in terms of price/quality ratio. Many procedures are more accessible than in other EU countries. If you have a residence permit, you can receive medical assistance and medicines, part of the cost of which will be paid by the state. The equipment and staff of the clinics are of the highest quality.


Israeli clinics and doctors are famous all over the world. In this country, medicine is innovative and the most advanced methods of diagnosis and treatment are being introduced. For legal residents of the country, access to medicine is almost free. You only need to join the health insurance fund — this is the local analogue of insurance medicine. One problem is that only Jews can actually get citizenship and a residence permit in Israel. Representatives of other nationalities will have to pay for the services of doctors in full, and this is not cheap.


85% of medical institutions in Spain are owned by the state. For legal residents of the country, access to medicine is almost free. At the same time, in terms of the quality of medical care, Spanish clinics are regularly included in the TOP 5 European countries. In addition to free medical care, residents of the country receive a discount on medicines. Usually, the amount of this discount is 40-50% of the cost of medicines. Pensioners who have reached the age of 65 pay 10% of their cost for medicines. The best medicine in Europe A number of European countries are famous for the fact that with high-quality equipment and well-trained personnel, they have managed to ensure a low cost of medical care. Such states include:


In general, Hungary lags behind the EU states in economic development, including Poland, the Czech Republic and Slovakia. But this does not apply to the medical industry. Clinics in Budapest are equipped with the latest equipment and highly professional staff. Cost of treatment is much lower than in other EU states. As a result, foreigners go to Hungary for treatment, and medical tourism brings significant revenues to the country. Americans come to Hungary en masse to be treated, in the USA similar services cost about twice as much. In the case of obtaining a residence permit, a foreigner gets access to almost free medicine, you only need to purchase an insurance policy at a price of 20-40 euros.


The country of ” old ” Europe. However, its level of economic development lags behind its neighbors. Salaries and prices in Portugal are lower. The cost of treatment is not as high as in other Western European countries. The state’s policy is socially oriented. In most cases, the government pays 100% of the cost of treatment. However, the state covers 55-60% of the cost for dental care, hospital treatment and diagnostics. The rest should be covered by the patient.


Not accepted into the EU, Turkey, in addition to ordinary tourism, is rapidly developing medical tourism. The state invests huge funds in the purchase of equipment and technologies for clinics and training of personnel. In comparison with European, Turkish prices for treatment are not high. Europeans and residents of the CIS countries are coming to the country en masse for treatment. Legalized foreigners get access to medicine on the same grounds as Turkish citizens. You need to buy insurance and get access to almost free medical care. It is much easier to get a residence permit in Turkey than in the countries of the European Union.

To get free or inexpensive access to high-quality medicine in European countries, you need to legalize in one of them by obtaining a residence permit, permanent residence or citizenship. If we are talking about a trip to Europe for the treatment of a specific disease, you first need to find out in which clinics it is treated qualitatively. Different countries and medical centers are usually famous for treating not all, but specific diseases. Having compiled a list of suitable clinics, you can proceed to compare their prices.

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