Healthcare while travelling in Belgium
Belgium’s healthcare system provides benefits for hospital, medical, pharmaceutical, some allied services and ambulance during your stay. Varying patient charges apply for all services.
You should present your Medicare card when receiving the health services as listed below.
You should pay the practitioner and take the account, with your Medicare card, to any health insurance fund for reimbursement.
Health insurers have offices throughout Belgium. A list can be found at this site: http://www.inami.fgov.be/fr/Pages/default.aspx (French) http://www.inami.fgov.be/nl/Paginas/default.aspx (Dutch)
Long stay in Belgium
If you will be staying in Belgium for more than one year, you should register with a health fund. You will be issued an SIS card which can be used at the health fund to claim for medical treatment. The SIS card can be used at hospitals and pharmacies to direct bill expenses to the fund. There are patient co-payments on all services.
This includes general practitioners, specialists, some dental services and allied health, such as physiotherapy, when referred by a doctor.
The patient attends a practitioner of choice and pays the fee. The health insurance fund will refund 60-75% of the fee, depending on the type of treatment.
Present your Medicare card when being admitted to hospital. The hospital will contact a health insurance fund to arrange payment for the treatment. You will have to pay a charge for admission, a small daily fee and co-payments on health services.
If you have registered with a health insurance fund because you are staying for more than one year in Belgium, present your SIS card to the hospital.
Prescription of medicines
The reimbursement on pharmaceuticals depends on their classification. Medicines are categorised A, B, C or D. Refunds vary from 100% for category A to nil for category D.
Reimbursement can be claimed from any health insurance fund with your Medicare card. If you have an SIS card, the pharmacy will automatically bill the fund.
Ambulance travel is subsidised in Belgium. The health insurance fund will reimburse 33% of the cost.