The pros and cons of healthcare system in France

Everyone residing legally in France is obliged to apply for health insurance. It is worth mentioning that compared to the healthcare system available in other countries, the French one covers both private and public doctors, hospitals and other medical experts. It is one of the most accessible healthcare systems in the world, even for foreigners. However, no matter how good it is, there are some drawbacks as well, so below in this article you will find the pros and cons of it, according to experts.

Pro – it is more affordable

Compared to other healthcare systems worldwide, the French one is inexpensive due to government-set caps and fees. What is more, most costs are reimbursed, which means that even though you have to pay for the medical services in the first place, you will get most of your money back in a while.

Pro – it is accessible

Another great benefit the French healthcare system provides is that the public one is extremely accessible even for unemployed, on the condition that they are legal residents in France. In case one gets sick or has a medical issue that needs to be treated urgently, one can benefit from formalite arret 93 and great medical services in public hospitals in France.

Pro – expats and foreigners can benefit from the healthcare system too

In other countries around the world, foreigners and expats have very few advantages when it comes to the national healthcare system. In France on the other hand, even they can access subsidised healthcare. However, there is one main rule they have to obey to have access to these services – to prove they have been living in France legally for at least three months.

Pro – patients get to choose their doctors

In some countries, patients who want to benefit from the national health insurance cannot choose the doctor they want themselves, but they are assigned with a specific doctor, which sometimes can be inconvenient for the patient due to various reasons. This rule does not apply in France though, as people have the freedom to select whichever doctor they want, not to mention that patients also have the right to look for direct medical attention from various specialists, without presenting a doctor’s referral.

Con – the three-month residence period can be a problem sometimes

It was mentioned above that foreigners can benefit from the French health insurance only if they prove they have been living in France legally for three months, which sometimes this can be a problem for the patient. If they need medical treatment urgently, they may have to pay for it in a private clinic and this can be rather expensive without insurance coverage.

Con – healthcare system comes with a price tag

It is true that France’s healthcare system is one of the highest quality ones in the world, but this also comes with a price tag. Employed residents are obliged to pay a great deal of money in taxes in order for them to shoulder the costs of this system. Those who do not require medical attention that much may find this a burden.