The Greek national health system provides healthcare services through a network of public providers and contracted private providers of primary, hospital and ambulatory care. Although healthcare within the framework of the national health benefits basket is free at the public providers, the insured patient is required to pay co-payment when opting for contracted hospital healthcare providers. There are no contracted dentists within the national health insurance scheme. Dental care is available only in Health Units of the National Primary Healthcare Network (greek acronym PEDY).
You can obtain medically necessary treatment by presenting the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC), when you are temporarily staying in Greece. Medically necessary treatment refers to treatment that cannot wait for your return home. You may need such treatment in case of acute illness or accident. You can also receive treatment related to pregnancy and childbirth or to a chronic illness. The need for treatment must emerge during the course of your stay.
You will receive treatment on the same terms and at the same price as the locals. It is advisable to carry copies of your European Health Insurance Card with you, along with the card itself. If you didn’t have your EHIC with you or it was not accepted, and you were required to pay all the costs of treatment yourself, you might be able to apply for reimbursement from Kela retrospectively.
Access to primary, hospital and ambulatory healthcare for EHIC (European Health Insurance Card) holders is ensured by presenting the valid EHIC and proof of identification (passport or ID) in the network of healthcare providers.
In Greece, primary healthcare is provided by different types of service providers. Healthcare within the public system is provided free of charge by PEDY Units (National Primary Healthcare Network) and by ESY (National Health System) state hospitals, health centers, rural and medical offices. In addition, there are also EOPYY (National Organization for the Provision of Health Services) contracted healthcare providers: doctors, diagnostic centers and private clinics. At the contracted service providers you are required to pay a co-payment. At a certified private doctor that has not been contracted by EOPYY, you are liable for all costs by yourself.
Hospital treatment for European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) holders is provided by ESY state hospitals free of charge and EOPYY contracted private clinics, where you are required to pay a co-payment.
The National Contact Point of Greece provides useful healthcare information for visitors on their website.
In need of a doctor, you can use the Health Atlas search tool to locate the nearest PEDY Health Unit closest to you. Healthcare provided at PEDY Health Units is free of charge, including dental care (where available).
You can consult a doctor in the public Healthcare System (PEDY units or ESY outpatient services) or in an EOPYY contracted private medical office free of charge. EOPYY contracted medical offices have a limit of 200 consultations per month free of charge. Beyond this limitation, patients are required to pay privately for the consultation and therefore you are advised to enquire about the availability for EHIC holders beforehand.
E-prescriptions must be dispensed within a certain time period from the date of issue. Time limitation is written on the prescription. If not used on time, the prescription will be cancelled automatically. At the pharmacy, present your European Health Insurance Card and ID along with the prescription.
Usually a doctor will provide a referral for hospital treatment. Present your EHIC and your ID on admission. Hospital healthcare is free in the public hospitals (ESY). In the EOPYY contracted private clinics/hospitals you should expect to pay a co-payment for part of the hospitalization cost (30%) + doctors’ fees + choice for room upgrades + potential additional charges per case. In emergencies, you can go directly to a public hospital. You can call phone line 166 to receive information on which hospitals are on-call duty. Urgent medical care is always free of charge.
Emergency ambulance (phone line 166) transport to a public hospital is free of charge. Transportation by air ambulance, which is the responsibility of the National Centre for Emergency Care (greek acronym EKAV) is free of charge in most cases, for example when having to be transported from an island to the mainland due to a critical health condition. However, if your illness requires you to use special transport when returning to Finland, you will be liable for the travel costs in their entirety. You are recommended to take out a travel insurance that covers these costs.
Read more about suddenly falling ill in Europe.
Read more about reimbursement of costs of treatment abroad.
If you wish to travel to Greece for the purpose of using healthcare services you can find general information on seeking treatment abroad on our site. For more detailed information, you should get in contact with the Greek National Contact Point.
Quality and safety of treatment
In the event of treatment injuries, the legislation and patient insurance of the country providing the treatment is always applied. In case you are unhappy with the treatment you received, you should primarily try to sort the matter out with the treatment provider. The national contact point can help you with finding the right authority if you wish to make a complaint.