The Netherlands has a high standard of medical care. The 2009 “Perception survey on quality of life in European cities” conducted by the European Union among inhabitants of 75 cities in the European Union, Turkey and Croatia, ranked Groningen at the top position concerning satisfaction with health care provided by physicians and hospitals. 95% of the respondents in Groningen qualified the level of health care from physicians and hospitals as highly or rather satisfactory. However, it is essential to be fully insured. Medical costs can be very high, especially if they include a stay in hospital. Students at institutes of higher education are not automatically insured against medical expenses abroad. You have to take care of this yourself.
All international students in the Netherlands must carry health insurance. The kind you need will depend on your country of origin, age, length of stay and whether you have a job in the Netherlands as well as studying here.
- General practitioners: for medical problems, you can consult a general practitioner (huisarts).
- Hospital and emergencies. Every hospital provides first aid care in the event of an accident or emergency. However, it is not customary in the Netherlands to go to a hospital (ziekenhuis) for minor symptoms such as headaches or stomach aches. Visit the general practitioner instead.
- Medication. Go to a pharmacy (apotheek) with the prescriptions from a general practitioner or specialist. There they will provide you with the prescribed medication.
- Physiotherapist.You can consult a physiotherapist at the University Sports Centre (ACLO) in the Zernike complex.
- Vaccinations, tests and confidential treatment. The public health department (GGD) gives vaccinations and carries out tests for diseases.