Amazing think about Spain is that most doctors are English speaking and they provide excellent medical facilities. Like UK, Spain’s health services are divided into two tier i.e. National health care units and private sector. To qualify for former, one has to contribute in social security being a native Spain or British citizen, otherwise private health insurance is a good option.
Spain National Health Care Services:
If you have ever visited Spain then you will have an idea about the walking on roads. Usually, there are no pavements which means you are on high risk of accident while walking on the road.
On Sunday fine morning, my wife was returning to home after paying visit to a newsagent, she suddenly tripped off and fell of the pavement. Later we came to know that she has fractured her wrist along with little finger. Luckily, at that time we were making social security contribution due to our estate business, which helped us in qualifying foot the national health services.
If one is self-employed, then pay visit to local security office, complete the paper work and get eligible for the national health care services. If you are serving an organization then your employers are bound to get this done for you by paying a fraction from their pockets and dedicating rest from your salary.
After that accident, we started locating a hospital. We came across a hospital but it was private. Anyhow, they directed us to the National hospital. We faced some trouble due to the language barriers between us and Native Spanish receptionist, however, after a while a doctor helped us as he knew English. HE told us that we had come to wrong hospital and directed us to the hospital in our district. They provide us good medical care. However, as X-ray facility was not available there so we have to visit another hospital that was 35 Km away. After reaching there, we told receptionist about our problem and got immediate care. An X-ray confirmed the broken finger. My wife got necessary medical care along with appointment for next week for follow up.
Private Health Care Services:
We also experienced private services, when we moved to Spain as we had no knowledge of social security services. I needed a medical visit, and at that time as I was not eligible for National health care services, I had to go private. On the entrance, they ask me to pay 40 Euro for consultancy and registered me. I received excellent and quick health care. My blood was taken for tests, and after a day I got a call for collecting results the very next day. I played 80 Euro for the blood tests but it was worthwhile. I was directed to another specialist, who charged me 120 Euro and in the end confirmed that I’m perfectly healthy. However, he gave me follow-up appointment after six months where I just have to pay 80 Euro.
Health Care Precautions Before moving to Spain:
To sum-up my experience of health services in Spain, here are some suggestions:
- You must know nearest hospitals where you are living, get yourself registered ASAP.
- Work in the government sector to quality for National healthcare services.
- Keep a list of emergency numbers.
- Try and learn some useful Spanish words.