EU/EEA citizens are entitled to the same social welfare benefits in Estonia as Estonian residents. For this you should obtain the EU Health Insurance Card (EHIC) from the social service authority in your home country before arriving in Estonia. Please see more information about the EHIC card on the European Commission website.
EHIC grants the right to receive necessary medical care during your stay in the European Union and in the European Economic Area under the same conditions and at the same cost (free in some countries) as people insured in that country.
- EHIC is not an alternative to travel insurance
- EHIC does not cover patient's costs when travelling with the purpose of medical treatment
- EHIC does not guarantee free services
EHIC or its replacement certificate gives you the right to necessary healthcare during a temporary stay under the same rules and rights as for Estonian insured persons. Always show your EHIC along with your ID.
As the EHIC does not cover travel insurance and private healthcare or other such as a return flight to your home country or lost and/or stolen propery, you can obtain additional private health insurance.
International students from non-EU/EEA countries have to obtain an internationally valid private health insurance. This is necessary to apply for a long-stay (D) visa or a Temporary Residence Permit for study in Estonia. Some of the insurance providers which are accepted by the Estonian Police and Border Guard are:
- ERGO (health insurance contract can be signed after arrival to Estonia);
- Inges (health insurance contract can be signed online);
- Salva Kindlustuse AS (health insurance contract can be signed online);
- Swisscare (health insurance contract can be signed online);
- KindlustusEst (insurance broker who can help finding a suitable insurance provider; health insurance contract can be signed online).
Important! We recommend you to get a family physician (perearst) as soon as you arrive to Estonia, so in case you need to use the service you would already know where to turn to. It is not easy to find one and therefore a lot of people use private medical centres.
You can reach the ambulance (kiirabi) by calling 112.
The emergency room (erakorralise meditsiini osakond (EMO)) is open 24/7. You do not need to make an appointment to go to EMO. The visit costs 5 euros if you have your EHIC with you. Private health insurance usually reimburses the costs after the visit - please check with your provider for details and have your insurance policy with you when going to the ER.
- Ravi tn 18
- J. Sütiste tee 19
- Punane tn 18
- Paldiski mnt 68
Free medical counselling is available through the family physician's advisory line (perearsti nõuandeliin) by calling 1220. English advice is available every day from 3 to 5 PM. Estonian and Russian advice is available 24/7.
If you're unsure where to turn to with health problems please consult this website for more information.
Family physicians in Tallinn. You need to make an appointment before visiting the family physician. The first visit and a home visit cost 5 euros if you have your EHIC with you. Private health insurance usually reimburses the costs after the visit - please check with your provider for details and have your insurance policy with you when going to the doctor.
Some of the family physicians in the city centre:
- Sinu Arst Medical Centre | address: Narva mnt 7 | Tel: +372 661 6036 | e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org (private medical centre, please be prepared to pay up to 75 euros for an appointment)
- Medicum | address: Uus-Sadama 21 | Tel: +372 631 8509 | e-mail: email@example.com
- Liivalaia Perearst OÜ | address: Ravi tn 27 | Tel: +372 641 4550 | e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Magdaleena Perearstid OÜ | address: Pärnu mnt 104 | Tel: +372 606 7658
- MedCare | address: Narva mnt 7 | Tel: +372 55620023 | e-mail: email@example.com
- Mymed OÜ - Dr. Karin Pärnpuu | address: Uus-Sadama 19/21 | Tel: +372 5650 3333 (private medical centre, please be prepared to pay up to 60 euros for an appointment)
Some of the family physicians in Mustamäe:
- Mustamäe ja Nõmme Perearstikeskus OÜ | address: Ehitajate tee 27 | Tel: +372 659 8043
- Doktor Kraft-Jaaksoo OÜ | address: Sütiste tee 19a | Tel: +372 655 4552
NB! We suggest you ask another student or a friend to assist you with making an appointment and also to go with you in case the medical staff does not speak English.
Structure of the Estonian Medical Care System
Family physician (perearst) is the first person to consult with in the case of illness. The family physician sends the person to a medical specialist, gives advice concerning the prevention of diseases, takes preventive measures, issues health certificates and prescriptions. In case of acute illness the family physician must see the patient the same day, otherwise within 3 working days. Every family physician has a list of patients they take care of. It is possible to be added to the patient's list by submitting an application to the selected physician.
All specialists' visits are organised through the family physician. Exceptionally, no referral is needed to visit a psychiatrist, gynaecologist, dermatovenerologist, ophthalmologist, dentist, pulmonologist (for tuberculosis treatment), infection specialist (for HIV/AIDS treatment), surgeon or orthopaedist (for traumatology). For international students, it is advisable to choose all the specialists through the family physician or medical advisors. Usually specialists have consultations in the polyclinics and the waiting times are a few weeks, in the private clinics the waiting lines are shorter.
The ambulance service (kiirabi) is free of charge in case of emergency or unavoidable medical aid. You can call the ambulance on 112 from all over Estonia.
A pharmacy (apteek) can assist with simple medical problems. Even though most of the drugs are issued upon a medical prescription written by a doctor, some of painkillers, antacids, ointments, and other simple drugs can be obtained without one. There are several pharmacies around town, but you will most likely find one in any of the big shopping centres. There is a 24-hour pharmacy in the city centre at Tõnismägi 5.
Visiting the dentist (hambaarst) is not free for adults. A visit can cost around 30 euros or more, depending on the issue.
Dentists in the city centre:
Hospitals and Polyclinics
- East-Tallinn Central Hospital | address: Ravi street 18 | Tel: 1900 | e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
- West-Tallinn Central Hospital | address: Paldiski road 68 | Tel: 1314 | e-mail: email@example.com
- North Estonia Medical Centre | address: Sütiste street 19 | Tel: +372 617 1049 | e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Psychiatry Clinic | address: Paldiski road 52 | Tel: 617 2650
In case you need to use specific medication, please do not bring large amounts of medicinal products with you to Estonia to avoid problems on the border. Please more information here. Most of them are also found in Estonia. Please write down the name of the active ingredient found in the medicine just in case.
Insurance information and how to obtain the required medical benefits in Estonia is provided by the Estonian Health Insurance Fund (EHIF) (Eesti Haigekassa). A detailed overview of the Estonian healthcare system can be found here.