Health and Medical in Estonia
It's always advisable to take medical insurance before travelling abroad so speak to your travel agent or insurance provider about that.If you take, or are likely to require, medication regularly then it's also advisable to carry a letter from doctor explaining your needs.Pharmacies are well stocked with basic and prescription medicines but note that some medicines that are available in stores and supermarkets in other countries - such as Aspirin and various ointments - are only available in pharmacies in Estonia.Herbal remedies and other organic products are also available in some supermarkets and nature shops.Estonia's medical services are as good as, if not better, than those in most other EU countries. After independence, we were able to combine the Soviet idea of free care for all with Western standards of knowledge and hygiene. We can now be proud of our national health service. There are also private clinics.
In case you need health care while staying in Estonia (for EU citizens):
All insured people have a family practitioner, who is the first contact point in case of illness. The family practitioner treats minor illnesses, can make home visits and gives referrals to visit a medical specialist. No referral is needed to visit a psychiatrist, gynaecologist, dermatovenerologist, ophthalmologist, dentist, pulmonologist (for tuberculosis treatment), infection specialist (for HIV/AIDS treatment), surgeon or orthopaedist (for traumatology).
For more information on family practitioners, see the website of Estonian Health Insurance Fund. The list of family practitioners in Tartu is available on the city of Tartu's website (in Estonian). As the information is in Estonia, ask your tutor's help when choosing and signing up with a family practitioner. In case the doctor does not speak English, you could also try asking your tutor to come with you to the appointment. Do not forget to take your EHIC or private health insurance documents with you. Specialised medical care
All visits to medical specialists are organized via the family practitioner except for specialists listed on p. 3. International students are advised to consult the family practitioner when choosing a particular medical specialist. Visit fee for a medical specialist is up to 5 EUR. However, some appointment times are outside the insurance scheme and then the visit fee may be much higher. It is advisable to ask about the visit fee when making the appointment.Medical specialist may find that you need hospitalization. If you are insured, in-patient fee of up to 2.50 EUR per day is charged for up to 10 days per hospitalization.
In most cases, you should only pay the visit fee and the doctor will send invoices for the rest of the costs directly to your insurance provider. If the doctor you visit does not have a contract with the insurance provider for the compensation of cost, you must pay the full cost of the health service yourself. In that case, keep all the cost documents and referrals and apply for compensation from your insurance provider. If you have any problems using your (private) health insurance in Estonia, you can ask for information and advice from your insurance provider or the Estonian Health Insurance Fund by calling their information line 16363.
For adults, dental care is not free of charge. Usual visit may cost from 10 EUR upwards depending on the problem. There are many dental care providers in Tartu, the most central one is the Stomatology Clinic of Tartu University (Town Hall Square 6, 2nd floor, tel. 731 9100).You can find information on dental care providers on the city of Tartu's website (it is in Estonian, so please ask further assistance from your tutor).
The most central pharmacy is Tartu Raeapteek in the town hall building (at Town Hall Square), open 24 hours. However, there are many pharmacies all around the city (also in each shopping center in city center).