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Health insurance for international students in the Netherlands

Health insurance for international students in the Netherlands

Health insurance for international students in the Netherlands

Whether you will need to take out Dutch health insurance during your study in the Netherlands depends on various factors. How long will you stay in the Netherlands? Will you just be studying, or will you also be working? Do you have insurance in your home country? Read more to find out.

Is Dutch health insurance compulsory for international students in the Netherlands?

So, when is Dutch health insurance compulsory and when is it not? As stated earlier, it all depends on your personal situation:

International students staying temporarily

Dutch health insurance is compulsory when the Dutch government considers you a resident of the Netherlands. This means that, generally, international students are not obliged to take out Dutch health insurance, since their stay in the Netherlands is only temporary.

Working in the Netherlands during your studies

Once you start working in the Netherlands during your studies, whether you have taken on a small part-time job, or you are doing a paid internship or volunteer work for which you are getting an allowance, you will likely be insured under the Wlz scheme (the Long-term Care Act), and this means you will be obligated to take out Dutch health insurance. Please note, a zero-hour contract also counts as a job.

SVB assessment

If you are not sure whether you are insured under the Wlz scheme, you can request an assessment, free of charge, on the website of the Sociale Verzekeringsbank.

Will your home country’s health insurance cover you during your stay?

This depends on whether you are from the EU, EEA and Switzerland, or not:

EU, EEA and Switzerland

If you are from the EU, EEA or Switzerland, and you are planning to study in the Netherlands, you can apply for the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). This card is issued free of charge and with it, you will be able to get free or discounted medical care in Europe. Note, the EHIC is not a replacement for travel insurance, as it does not cover such things as the flight home after sustaining serious injuries or illnesses. It also doesn’t cover private healthcare and (most) planned treatments.

How to apply for the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC)

You are eligible to apply for the EHIC if you are paying towards or covered by your country’s social security system. How to apply for it differs per country. Click here to find out more about your country’s EHIC application process.

Non-EU, EEA

If you are from a non-EU / EEA country, and you are not working (part-time) or doing an internship during your studies, you can’t take out Dutch public health insurance. Your best option is taking out private health insurance.

Healthcare insurance providers for international students in the Netherlands

If you are interested in taking out student health insurance, you will be happy to know that various insurance companies offer special packages for international students. Loonzorg, for example, offers two Student Insurance Policies that will cover most unforeseen student health expenses.

Healthcare allowance 

Often, international students who are obligated to take out Dutch health insurance can apply for healthcare allowance (zorgtoeslag) to help cover your monthly premiums. Check the requirements for Dutch healthcare allowance.

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