Your first steps of healthcare in France!

Written By: Ayoub Haidar
All countries

France is known for good health, and it is official!

You should ask in your home country before you decide your move the land of Moulin rouge, if you need to bring any required documents with you, depending on your medical needs.

1 If you’re an expat coming to France from outside The EU, EEA and Switzerland!

The healthcare system in France is funded partially by obligatory social security contributions (sécurité sociale), which are usually deducted from your salary. In 2016 employees paid around 8 percent in total, while employers paid around 13 percent of salary towards health costs. You should first figure out your residency card (which our Xpert can help you obtaining) and then the moment you secure a job, you will be provided with a temporary Social Security service number, which will be changed to your permanent one as soon as you receive your first salary.

You should also know that the French healthcare system is partially funded by the government and the patient pays a small contribution to its healthcare costs.

So don’t get made if you went to see your GP and you were asked to pay 10 euros!

Then you either find your own doctor, or get an expert to help you depending on your medical need, a doctor to be registered with will referred!

You should also get the advice of an expert in case you need to know which health insurance to go for!

2) If you’re an expat coming to France from The EU, EEA and Switzerland!

You should ask at your local doctor’s surgery about the sort of documents required in France, the main one is The European Health Insurance Card (or EHIC) is issued free of charge and allows anyone who is insured by or covered by a statutory social securityscheme of the EEA countries and Switzerland to receive medical treatment in another member state free or at a reduced cost.

And later on, as soon as you secure a job, your social security number will show up on your first payslip. You can always get a temporary one if you registered before starting your job.

3 If you’re a student coming from the EEA and Switzerland and under 28 years old.

For students, If you’re from the EEA and Switzerland  and under 28 years old, you need to register Here in order to obtain a ECII European Card of Illness’ insurance.

But if  you are planning to stay for a long term (longer than 90 days) in France, you may be eligible for the social healthcare system in France, depending on which school they attend, and if eligible, 70% of most healthcare costs will be covered. In that case, it is recommended that you purchase a supplemental insurance plan that can cover the remaining costs that are not covered by the healthcare system when you are residing in France.

And later on everything should be either explained by your doctors receptionist or one of our Xperts !

4 If you’re a student coming from outside the EEA and Switzerland and under 28 years old.

The steps are not the same in details, but you should find a university or a college that includes your social security guaranteed, so be careful when choosing a university! You will also be asked to provide all of your info to Student’s social security services at your university! But instead of a simple ID copy, you should give them a copy of your visa and your passport! 

You should know that the healthcare in France doesn’t cover all the expenses, sometimes you are asked to pay a small fee when visiting the doctor.

France's healthcare system provides some of the best public healthcare in the world, although private health insurance is necessary for certain circumstances.

In case of an emergency there is an SOS help line in France for all English speakers, the conversations goes from emotional breakdowns to feeling homesick or isolated, or just a question to ask about Neymar’s last haircut in his birthday party!

The helpline is a secure helpline; you will be dealing with professionals! But before you get to use it, you need to be registered.

The landline is 01 46 21 46 46, if it’s busy, make sure you keep on calling. You can also collect SOS information in regards to the nearest place to where you will live in France, or simply ask your Xpert! 

Here is a list of important phone numbers to save in your phone!

3237: Outside hours GP and pharmacy information and also available on

18: Emergencies: This number connects to the fire brigade (Sapeurs Pompiers) but they also deal with medical emergencies and should be the first port of call in life-threatening situations

114: Emergency calls (hearing assisted)

Extra note:

The first step is to apply for “basic” public health insurance (securite social) which can be extended by paying for private supplementary insurance ("mutuelle"). For people with a low income, supplementary insurance is available free of charge and is known as supplementary universal medical cover (CMU-Complémentaire).

And for those without a residency permit and on a low income must apply for State medical aid (AME).



All the information in this article was obtained from official sources.

{ }