Health care


  • For life threatening situations call: 112 (ambulance, fire department or police department) or visit the emergency room at the nearest hospital.
  • If you are not feeling well and your symptoms are not life threatening, you can contact a general practitioner (GP, sometimes part of a health center) and make an appointment.
  • Do not visit the hospital directly for minor injuries, as your insurance will not cover these expenses. It is necessary in the Netherlands to visit your general practitioner first. The general practitioner can prescribe medication, that you can collect at the pharmacy, and/or refer you to a specialist or hospital.
  • For emergencies after 17.00 hrs and during weekends, you can contact the huisartsenpost at the nearest hospital or call the after hours clinic via telephone number +31 (0) 70 34 69 669.

About Dutch health care

Dutch health care is among the very best in the world. The medical system in the Netherlands may be very different to the one in your home country. Please familiarise yourself with the Dutch medical system, before you actually need medical help.

Once you have settled into your new home in The Hague region, there are three priorities for your medical well-being:

  1. Register at the municipality so you will get a citizen service number (BSN). You need this in order to make use of the Dutch healthcare system. The BSN is included in the patient/client data exchanged by healthcare providers, assessment bodies and health insurance companies.
  2. Get Dutch health insuranceIt is mandatory for everyone to purchase at least a base level of insurance and you must do so within 4 months of arrival, unless you have an existing policy that covers you in the Netherlands. Note: Dutch health insurance is mandatory for a residence permit.
  3. Find a General Practitioner (GP). A GP (huisarts) is your first point of contact for healthcare in the Netherlands, as he/she provides referrals to all specialists and, if necessary, to a hospital. Registering with a local practice is one of the first things you need to do.

Do you have questions about the above? Reach out to The Hague International Centre

Health care at your university

All educational institutes offer some sort of (study related) health care. For example, if you feel stressed, depressed, lonely, unsafe or suffer from other anxieties, please contact your international office, dean or look at the intranet to find out about these services.