Healthcare system in Greece: Everything you need to know

Greece, known for its rich history, stunning landscapes, and warm hospitality, also offers accessible and quality healthcare for both residents and visitors alike. In this article, we’ll explore everything you need to know about the healthcare system in Greece and how to access quality medical services during your stay in this beautiful country.

1. Healthcare System in Greece

The healthcare system in Greece is based on a mixed public and private healthcare system. Public healthcare is managed by the National Health Service (EOPYY), which provides medical coverage to most of the population through social insurance contributions and government funding.

In addition to the public system, Greece has a wide network of private hospitals and clinics that offer medical services to those who can pay for them or have private health insurance.

2. Accessing Medical Services

To access medical services in Greece, consider the following:

  • Health insurance: If you are a citizen of the European Union, you can access medical services in Greece by presenting your European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). For non-EU citizens, it is advisable to obtain travel health insurance that covers any eventuality during your stay in the country.
  • Primary care: Most cities and towns in Greece have health centers and primary care clinics where you can receive basic medical care and be referred to specialists if necessary.
  • Hospitals and clinics: Greece has a variety of both public and private hospitals and clinics. In case of an emergency, you can go to the nearest hospital for medical attention.

3. Medications and Pharmacies

Pharmacies in Greece are easily accessible and offer a wide range of both prescription and over-the-counter medications. Pharmacies often have extended hours and some are even open 24 hours a day. To purchase prescription medications, you will need a valid prescription from a licensed doctor in Greece.

4. Healthcare Costs

The cost of healthcare in Greece can vary depending on the type of treatment and whether you opt for public or private healthcare. Generally, public medical services tend to be more affordable than private ones but may be subject to long waiting times.

It is important to note that some medical services, such as visits to the general practitioner or certain medical procedures, may be covered by mandatory health insurance in Greece. However, you might need to pay out-of-pocket for other medical services, especially if you choose private healthcare.

5. Tips for a Healthy Stay in Greece

To ensure a healthy stay in Greece, we recommend:

  • Staying hydrated: The Mediterranean climate can be hot during the summer, so make sure to drink enough water to stay hydrated.
  • Sun protection: Use sunscreen and protective clothing to avoid sunburn and protect yourself from UV rays.
  • Following health recommendations: Pay attention to public health recommendations, especially during outbreaks of contagious diseases.

With these tips and a clear understanding of the healthcare system in Greece, you can enjoy your stay in this beautiful country with peace of mind and security.

Frequently Asked Questions about the Healthcare System in Greece:

What should I do if I need urgent medical attention while in Greece?

If you need urgent medical attention in Greece, you can go to the nearest hospital or call the medical emergency number 112 for immediate assistance.

Can I use my international health insurance in Greece?

Yes, many international health insurance policies offer coverage in Greece. However, it is important to check the terms of your policy to ensure which services are covered and whether you need to pay upfront and request reimbursement later.

What should I do if I lose my medication during my stay in Greece?

If you lose your medication during your stay in Greece, you can visit a local pharmacy to try to obtain a new prescription or a temporary supply of medication. You can also contact your country’s embassy or consulate for additional assistance.

How can I find a trusted doctor in Greece?

You can find a trusted doctor in Greece through local recommendations, online healthcare services, or by asking at your place of accommodation. You can also contact Orience for advice on recommended medical professionals in your area.

Is it necessary to have health insurance to visit Greece as a tourist?

Although it is not mandatory to have health insurance to visit Greece as a tourist, it is highly recommended to have travel insurance that covers any medical emergency or unexpected expense during your stay in the country. This will provide you with peace of mind and additional protection while you explore Greece.