Dutch healthcare system

The healthcare system in the Netherlands likely varies from what you’re accustomed to in your home country. In general, Dutch health insurance is categorized into two main types: basic insurance and supplementary insurance.
Every citizen in the Netherlands must have basic insurance. However, for additional coverage, one can opt for supplementary insurance alongside the basic plan. To help you navigate and understand the Dutch healthcare system better, we have compiled a variety of texts that shed light on its unique aspects.

Deductible Excess

The deductible excess amount is partially predetermined and can be categorized into two distinct types: the obligatory deductible excess and the voluntary deductible excess. Every individual with Dutch basic healthcare insurance is required to pay the obligatory deductible excess. On the other hand, the voluntary deductible excess is optional, giving you the freedom to choose whether to increase your deductible excess amount. Opting for a higher deductible excess can lead to a reduction in your monthly premium payments. To gain a deeper understanding of deductible excess in the Dutch healthcare system, feel free to explore more information here.

Healthcare allowance

Healthcare allowance is compensation for the relatively high costs of basic health insurance. Especially as a student you probably don’t have a high monthly budget. If you are eligible for the healthcare allowance, the Dutch Tax Authority will pay you the compensation. The amount will depend on your income and the family situation. To apply for a healthcare allowance you will need to contact the Dutch Tax Authority. Read more about healthcare allowance.

Changes Dutch healthcare insurance 2024

Each year the Dutch government changes the coverage of basic healthcare insurance. The changes can be divided into positive and negative changes. Read more about changes in the Dutch healthcare insurance.

European Health Insurance Card (EHIC)

When you travel to the Netherlands it is recommendable to get an EHIC card. This card is valid throughout all the European Union and provides you with the necessary healthcare abroad. You will be able to receive the same medical care as inhabitants of the country you’re visiting. The insurance will cover the costs of comparable medical emergency treatment in your own country. In most cases, it will be sufficient to cover the necessary medical treatment needed. If you want to apply for an EHIC card, go to your insurance company in your home country. Read more about the European Health Insurance Card.

Dutch system compared to other EU countries

The differences between the Dutch health care system and the systems of other European countries are significant. For example, there are European countries that only provide basic coverage whilst others have universal health care systems. We’ve made a comparison of the different existing health care systems in European countries to give you an overview of the differences. Read more about the Dutch system compared to other EU countries.

Health Insurance Act

The Dutch healthcare system is rooted in the Health Insurance Act. This act ensures proper, high-quality healthcare. It provides a certain standard to every person living in the Netherlands that has healthcare insurance. As a result insurance companies are obliged to offer a certain level of basic medical care in their packages. This package is equal for each insurance company. Moreover, insurance companies are not allowed to reject any person applying for basic health insurance. Read more about the Health Insurance Act

Additional services of insurance companies

Although Dutch health care insurance companies offer basic coverage, some additional services that they offer might be very convenient for you. If any of these additional services are of interest to you, depends on your personal situation. You might have a chronic disease or you might want to avoid waiting lists. The additional services differ between insurance companies. Check the conditions of your insurance policy to see if the desired additional service is provided. Read more about additional services of insurance companies.


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This page was created by using the following sources:

  • www.rijksoverheid.nl
  • www.belastingdienst.nl
  • www.zorgverzekeringslijn.nl

Information verified by expert

linda van ReenenThe information on this page has been verified by
Linda van Reenen. She is a specialist in the field of student insurance and has been working for Studentenverzekeringen.nl for over five years.

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