Each EU country has at least one contact point for cross-border health care, which provides information about the health services of the country or region and using the services. The contact points offer information on their website, and most also help customers through e-mail and telephone.
Interested in health services in Sweden? Ask the Swedish contact point
If you are planning to travel to another EU or EEA country for treatment, you can ask their contact point for advice. You can also ask for advice if you fall ill while travelling and need to find an eye specialist, for example. If you want to know about the health services of a specific country, such as whether the service provider is public or private or which quality criteria are observed in the country’s health services, ask the country’s contact point. The country’s contact point for cross-border health care can also tell you whether a specific medicine is available in the country or how to proceed in case of malpractice in the country. You can find the contact information for the contact points here.
The Finnish contact point helps with the reimbursement procedures and right to treatment
If you want to know about your rights to receive treatment in other EU or EEA countries or Switzerland and how Finland reimburses the use of health services abroad, contact the Finnish Contact Point for Cross-border Health Care. Contact points provide advice on a general level. Naturally, you can also ask about seeking treatment abroad, in which case the contact points direct you to the appropriate authorities. Similarly, the Finnish contact point advises people coming from abroad about using Finnish health care services.
You can also explore country-specific information on the Choosehealthcare.fi website, which describes the health services in different countries on a general level. The website features information about the health services of over 50 countries, also those outside the EU, EEA and Switzerland.
Contact points cooperate and meet regularly
The contact points have regular meetings, most recently in Brussels in March. The cooperation between the contact points is coordinated by SANTE, the Directorate General Health and Food Safety of the European Commission. The Commission monitors and promotes the realisation of the patient directive on patients’ rights in cross-border health care. In the March meeting, the Commission reported that the websites of each country’s contact point had been reviewed. The Commission also spoke about mystery shopping, where pretend customers asked the contact points for advice by e-mail and telephone last autumn. Finland did well in both tests.
The contact point’s Choosehealthcare.fi website was praised for its comprehensive information about reimbursement, among other things. Finland is also a frontrunner in social media; only five contact points of EU countries have their own Twitter account. You can follow the Finnish contact point on Twitter under @rajayhteyspiste.