Coverage of Czech health insurance
Non-EU nationals, who don’t work for Czech employers, are required to get travel health insurance before coming to the Czech Republic. Travel insurance covers visits to general practitioners and hospitals. In addition, any medication needed is covered to the same extent as it is for Czech citizens. Dental care however is not included. Insurance is valid for up to twelve months.
For short visits to the Czech Republic, short-term contracts can easily be arranged from your home country within only a couple of weeks. The costs of necessary and urgent treatments due to sudden illnesses or accidents in the Czech Republic are usually covered. However, contracts vary greatly between different insurance companies and it is recommended that you take some time to find the best offer. Some insurance policies do not include medication.
Paying in cash
It might happen that you are asked to pay in cash for any treatment you receive. If the treatment is included in your health insurance you should insist on not paying, because it can be hard to claim the money back from your insurer. If there is no other way than paying upfront, make sure that you receive a proper receipt explicitly stating what treatments you have received, and how much was charged for them.
The European health insurance card (EHIC) has simplified access to medical help for EU nationals. You are entitled to any kind of emergency treatment in case of illnesses or accidents in the Czech Republic and do not need to pay upfront. The insurance company of your home country covers the expenses. Non-emergency treatments and repatriation are not covered by the EHIC agreement.
If you are privately insured you will still have to pay for the treatments in the Czech Republic yourself. Back in your home country you can settle the cost with your health insurer. However, you should make sure you know how much your insurance policy is going to cover before you visit the Czech Republic.
For Czech citizens, foreigners with permanent residence in the Czech Republic and employees of companies located in the Czech Republic, participation in the public healthcare system through financial contributions is mandatory.