It is possible to obtain health care services, covered by the state-budget funds, in Latvia; services may also be covered from private insurance funds or a patient may fully cover health care services by himself or herself.
If the state-funded services are obtained, then patients pay patient contributions (which is a small part from the total costs of services), and the biggest part of the service costs are covered by the state in accordance with the unified service rates approved in the state.
If a person has obtained an insurance policy, then the payment scope of the particular service depends on the fact, whether and to what extent the particular insurance policy covers the respective service.
If a person fully pays for the medical service by himself or herself, then he or she shall perform it in accordance with the price list of the respective medical institution for paid services.
The State budget in Latvia covers:
- health care provided by a family doctor or his team;
- preventive examination at family doctor once per year (if a patient has not turned to the doctor in relation to illness within a year);
- breast, cervical and colon cancer preventive examinations;
- health care provided by specialists;
- examinations upon the referral of a family doctor or a specialist;
- medical assistance in the points for emergency medical assistance;
- health care services provided in a day hospital;
- health care in a day and night hospital;
- health care at home;
- assistance provided by the emergency medical care team;
- medical rehabilitation;
- medicine and medical equipment to be reimbursed.
In order to receive state-funded services, you shall turn to the medical institution, which provides state-funded services. In order to find out what particular services are covered by the state, please, take a look on the web-page of the National Health Service in the Section "Health care services" or call to the free line to citizens of Latvia 80001234 (between 8.30 to 17.00 o'clock on working days), as well as by telephone +371 67045005 for calls from abroad (between 8.30 to 17.00 on working days);
State-funded health care services are provided in Latvia to:
- citizens of Latvia;
- non-citizens of Latvia;
- citizens of the EU Member States, Island, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland, who have entered into labour relationships or reside as self-employed persons in Latvia (including their family members);
- foreigners, having a permanent residence permit in Latvia;
- refugees and persons, who have been granted an alternative status;
- children of the above mentioned inhabitants in the age up to 18 years.
Spouses of the citizens and non-citizens of Latvia, having temporary residence permit in Latvia, may obtain state-funded pregnant women care and child-birth assistance free of charge.
Other inhabitants may obtain paid medical services in Latvia in accordance with the price list of the respective medical institution for paid services.
Where to obtain medical assistance?
1. In case of minor injuries, acute illness and worsening of chronic diseases, please, turn to a family doctor or medical nurse.
2. In the case if you cannot attend a family doctor (non-working time of a family doctor), but the health conditions does not permit to wait for longer, please:
- call the General Practitioner Helpline 66016001 (5.00p.m. - 8.00a.m.; 24 hours on weekends and public holidays) for advice on regular illnesses;
- turn to doctors on duty in the medical institutions within your territory;
- visit the points of emergency medical assistance;
- turn to receiving-rooms of hospitals.
3. If a need appears to receive planned medical assistance, a family doctor or a specialist will evaluate the health condition of a patient (including, a patient may be sent to perform examinations or receive specialist's consultations) and issue a referral for receipt of outpatient services (for example, examinations) or medical assistance.
4. If your life is in danger, please, call to the Emergency medical service - 113!
In order to receive outpatient specialist's consultations, perform diagnostic examinations or receive outpatient medical services paid by other country, the patient shall turn to outpatient medical institutions, offering state-funded services.
In order to receive health care services in hospitals, the patient shall turn to medical institutions, where state-funded health care services are ensured in hospital.
What to remember in order to receive state-funded health care?
1. You shall be registered with a family doctor, because a family doctor may issue a referral to many state-funded health care services;
2. if you are not registered yet, please, turn to the family doctor, within a territory of activity of which your actual place of residence is located;
3. if you wish to receive a state-funded treatment by covering only patient contributions, you shall make sure, whether the doctor or medical institution chosen by you provides the state-funded medical services.
You may find information about the medical institutions providing state-funded medical services by telephone through toll free line to citizens of Latvia 80001234 (between 8.30 to 17.00 o'clock on working days), as well as by telephone +371 67045005 for calls from abroad (between 8.30 to 17.00 on working days);
In order to receive state-funded outpatient health care services - consultations provided by specialists, diagnostic examinations or day hospital services - you shall have a family doctor's or specialised doctor's referral.
Family doctor's or specialist's referral shall not be required if you turn to the direct availability specialists, for example:
- ophthalmologist (eye doctor);
- children's surgeon;
- dermatovenereologist, if a patient suffers from sexually transmitted disease;
- endocrinologist, if a patient suffers from diabetes mellitus;
- oncologist, if a patient suffers from oncologic disease;
- psychiatrist, if a patient suffers from mental illness;
- narcologist, if a patient suffers from alcohol, drug or psychotropic substance addiction;
- pneumonologist, if a patient suffers from tuberculosis.
Health care services
Before visiting the medical institution in order to receive state-funded health care services by covering only patient contributions, a patient shall find out, whether the doctor or medical institution chosen by the patient provides the state-funded services (namely, whether the doctor or medical institution chosen by the patient has concluded agreement with the National Health Service).
Only a family doctor or a specialised doctor is entitled to send a patient for state-funded health care services. If the state has not concluded agreement with a particular doctor or medical institution, then the services provided by them will be paid services in accordance with the price list set by the particular medical institution for paid services.