Health Basics

It is important to make sure that you are covered in terms of healthcare in case you get sick during your time in Maastricht. Even if you rarely fall sick or visit a doctor, it is sensible to know a bit about Dutch health care so that you can use it if you have to. This section explains how the overall organization of healthcare in the Netherlands works. We also provide you with important information on health insurance and what to do in the case of a medical emergency.


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In the Dutch system the family doctor (Huisarts) is the gatekeeper to healthcare. Every student should have a Family Doctor. This way you can get medical attention when you need it. Register with a Family Doctor in your neighbourhood as soon as you can. By registering with a doctor nearby you can avoid burdening hospital emergency services. For more information regarding the registration with a family doctor, check out the website of Zorg in Ontwikkeling’ (Care under Development).

Unless there is in an emergency you should always first consult your family doctor who will, if necessary, refer you to a specialist. Only the family doctor can refer you to necessary further specialists. Exempt from this rule is dental care where you can approach a dentist or dentist center directly.

Check out our map function to find your closest family doctor, dentist or pharmacy. Once you have found one, you can then call the office and make an appointment. There are also certain pharmacies that are open 24/7 which you can find on this website.


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Most students only need Dutch health insurance if they also work in the Netherlands. If you get a job in the Netherlands, it is required by Dutch law to get health insurance regardless of whether or not you have insurance elsewhere. Our page deals with all queries you may have relating to health insurance.

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If you need off-line help with filling out an application or finding specific information, you can turn to the International Service Desk (given that you are a student at UM). We collaborate closely and one of our colleagues will welcome you and assist you at the reception of the Student Services Center (SSC, located at Bonnefantenstraat 2, 6211KL, Maastricht) from Monday to Friday from 13.00 until 17.00. If you are not a student at UM step by the Holland Expat Centre South. They help every international in the Maastricht Region with all kind of issues.

International Service Desk Holland Expat Center South

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