Getting health insurance with VZP

Step by step way to get CZ health coverage with VZP as a foreigner

Being sick in any country is an unpleasant feeling, and if you don’t speak the language, the situation can sometimes become a horror story. The Czech Republic is no exception. Like all countries, health care is not free in the Czech Republic and in order to get seen to, one must have health insurance.

If you are just visiting the Czech Republic then your travel insurance (assuming you have purchased it) will work here although you might have to pay first and get reimbursed later.

If you are planning on moving here and have a job lined up already, make sure they will take care of your health insurance for you, or make sure that your existing health insurance covers you in the czech Republic. Most EU, US and Canadian health insurance providers should work in the Czech Republic.

If you are not working for a medium or large-size company, chances are you will have to get your own health insurance. As a foreigner you do not have to pay social tax, but you are required by law to have health insurance. When applying for a visa you will be required to show some proof of health insurance. Which company you choose is up to you, however the cheapest option around is Všeobecna Zdravotní Pojištovna Ceské Republiky: ODD. Pro Cizince. The following steps are necessary to get health insurance in the Czech Republic with this company. **

  1. Go to the office of Všeobecna Zdravotní Pojištovna Ceské Republiky, collect your physical exam form, and get the contact information to your local hospital where you can take this exam. Bring your passport

  2. Make an appointment at the hospital for your physical exam. They will probably schedule you the following week. Make sure you take 1200 Kc and your passport. NOTE: keep your receipt when you pay as you receive a discount when you turn this in to the insurance office.

  3. Go to your physical exam: standard blood test and family health history questions.

  4. Pick up your exam results. The time period for this is also 1 week. Bring your passport

  5. Take your results, your exam receipt, your passport and the amount that you are required to pay according to age and sex group to the insurance office

  6. Give all documents to the broker. She/he will then give you a receipt, which you take to the GE Capital Bank** across the street where you must pay for your 6-month or 1 year insurance.

  7. Go to the bank pay the amount and then return to the insurance office with the receipt of payment

  8. Go straight back into the office and turn in your receipt to pick up your insurance NOTE: Don’t wait in line again in the Cekarna, waiting room, you are entitled to go straight back in!

  9. Leave the office and know that you can now be injured and all will be fine, of course you still have to survive the hospital


  10. Make 2 photo copies of your insurance, carry 1 with you, leave 1 at work, and leave the original at home

If you are new to Prague, chances are very, very likely that you do not speak Czech. Unfortunately, the people in this office do not speak English, German, French or even Italian. The best thing to do is to find a Czech friend and have them go to the office with you, make the call to the hospital for you and fill in the documents with you.

The irony that the foreign insurance office does not speak English is an inexplicable welcoming mat to the intricacies of Czech bureaucracy. Kafka, whom I highly recommend reading for some insight into the Czech system of non-functioning systems, was right on the money when he wrote; "Every revolution evaporates and leaves behind only the slime of a new bureaucracy." Welcome.

** Všeobecna Zdravotní Pojištovna Ceské Republiky
Vítězné náměstí 9
Praha 6

Opening hours
Mondays & Wednesdays 8am-5pm
Tuesdays & Thursdays 8am-4pm
Fridays 8am-1:30pm

** GE Capitol Bank
Vítězné náměstí 2
Praha 6

Tram stop: Vítězné náměstí trams 02, 25, 26
Metro stop: Dejvicka

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