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Health insurance in France


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Why is health insurance in France important?

If you are going to France to live or work for a period of time from several months to many years, it is important to take out health insurance in France in order to insure your health, protect your assets and to give you freedom of choice. This health insurance will also give you access to the best medical facilities worldwide and provides important medical cover where you need it.

A fundamental principle of healthcare funding in France is the element of personal contribution so the state does not cover all a person's medical charges. To make up the difference between what the state pays and the cost of treatment, most French residents take out an insurance policy to cover the difference (complement). This is called a police complémentaire or mutuelle.

Over the past few years, government health reforms have shifted some of the burden of paying for healthcare onto these complementary insurers, with a resulting increase in premiums. This trend is almost certain to continue as the Government continues to wrestle with the health budget deficit, which means your choice of provider is very important.

Providers use all class of criteria in applying premium rates. But not all use the same point of view or criteria. So if you have no idea of the criteria that can be applied then you are at a disadvantage. Some insurers will issue a table of premiums but many will not. What they will do is to give you the benefits and an individual quote based on your personal details.

All very specialist but they may have a surprise an in-built loading of which you are completely ignorant. For example, premiums will generally be higher if you live in the big cities, principally Paris. But the converse is not necessarily true. If you live in a remote rural area some insurers will load your premium because the cost of services as ambulances and doctors/nurses home visits will be more expensive. (In addition to the set tariff home visits attract a charge per kilometre that in turn varies depending on the geography of the commmune).

Providers of health insurances in France

French Social Security
Sickness insurance
Sickness insurance is available to everyone in France. The general plan that covers almost everyone is the regime general. It covers most employees, students, job seekers, and persons collecting worker's compensation as well as retired people.
Private Health Insurance
BUPA has excellent student plans. They have the best private plans for sports coverage such as flying, climbing, and diving, which are all covered within the policy. Both British and American students are eligible for this plan.
Website: BUPA

William Russell
William Russell offers three plans, with optional cover for travel and personal accident insurance. They have plans available for expatriates of all nationalities and give you complete freedom to choose where you are treated.
Website: William Russell

Outpatient treatment, home nursing, maternity and ophthalmic cares are all extras for which you can expect to pay more. You may also want to look at whether your health plan covers complementary therapies such as acupuncture and homeopathie.

International Health Insurance danmark
International Health Insurance Denmark is particularly reliable for its maternity coverage. They cover expatriates of all nationalities, those living in several foreign countries as well. The programs cover routine work as well such as dental. The insurance is valid for life, no matter how old or ill you become.
Website: International Health Insurance danmark

If you still can't choose a health company, you should e-mail Medibroker. It is a global brokerage company that finds health insurance providers for the client. They usually make a blend of perhaps two or three companies in order to find an ideal plan for the client.
Website: Medibroker

Europe Assistance
Europe Assistance was formed in France and is geared towards UK expatriates. It also offers a very helpful relocation service through its subsidiary Settler International. They are the official assistance company for the Olympics and have their own planes and doctors.
Website: Europe Assistance

We fully understand that insurance can be a confusing and frustrating experience and that's exactly why we've put together this website. To educate and give you non biased information on Life, Home and Car Insurance. Hopefully, we will shed some light on some questions you may have and give you information you didn't even know you needed.
Website: Insurances

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