In The Netherlands every person needs to have health insurance by law. Even if you are already insured in your own country or work temporarily in The Netherlands you are still required to have health care insurance.
You are free to choose your own health insurer. Moreover, you can change insurers once at the end of the year. To register you will need a social security number (in Dutch this is called a BSN-nummer or burgerservicenummer). You can find this number on you residence permit.
Appointment in a hospital without reference will not be refunded!!!
Anyone who lives or works in the Netherlands is obliged by law to have health insurance. The basic is the same for everyone and covers the cost of such general practitioner, hospital or pharmacy. The government determines the content of the basic insurance. People can take out additional insurance for costs not included in the basic sit. The fees and premiums vary by insurer.
Visit a hospital specialist without a referral from a GP for example, you will not receive compensation from the insurer. You will subsequently be sent a bill. Why?
Insurers look more critically at the use of care because health care costs continue to rise. To prevent people from unnecessary use of (expensive) specialist care, like the insurers that patients only visit a specialist after referral by: midwife, medical specialist, general practitioner, company doctor, dentist.
Note: this does not apply to patients who need emergency care.
Or if you are already being treated by a medical specialist, then a new reference is not necessary when you want to make an inspection appointment.
The health coverage
The basic health coverage with every insurer covers:
- Medical care, including that provided by GP's, hospitals, medical specialists and obstetricians
- Hospital stays
- Dental health-care for those aged up to 18 years
- Medical Appliances
- Medicines (however, contraception is not included)
- Maternity Care
- Medical transportation (by ambulance or by public transport, taxi or private car)
- Paramedical care (limited physiotherapy/remedial therapy, speech therapy, advice on dieting)
- IVF(In vitro fertilisation)
- With some insurers you are free to choose a GP, dentist or hospital. Other insurers work together with specific medical professionals and institutions. With these insurers you are required to use the expertise of these professionals.
All insurers offer supplementary health insurance policies to provide additional coverage.
Please take a look at the site of Zorgverzekering Informatie Centrum: http://www.zorgverzekering.org/eng/general-information/