Registering with a doctor/Healthcare

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raw
Posts: 19
Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2016 9:47 pm

Registering with a doctor/Healthcare

Postby raw » Tue Jul 04, 2017 1:09 pm

Hello,
Well here goes! We are considering moving to Crete, we have rented an apartment and got ourselves comfortable. Now we are starting to investigate the logistics of the move. We have to find out if this plan is viable before we commit.

First thing to mention is that we have been advised that its possible to join the health care service. This advice was provided by the owner of Greekbay in Sitia.

We were advised to go to the local hospital and ask there, which we did this morning, but basically got nowhere, which we were not surprised at as the hospital was busy and plainly overwhelmed by much needier people than us.

So how does someone register with a doctor, is it possible, do people pay into the service? Or is private insurance part of the answer? Can anyone advise what is the common/standard practice.

We have seen companies advertising that if someone makes a land/house/combination of purchases of over 250k they will get residency and access to the health services. Is this a reality or only available for those from 3rd countries (non EU)?

I know that in light of Brexit its more complicated, but as Brexit is such a mess (made worse by a government in turmoil) and is likely to get watered down or may not even actually happen we have to make our own plans. Life goes on!

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

R@W

Carolina
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Re: Registering with a doctor/Healthcare

Postby Carolina » Tue Jul 04, 2017 1:37 pm

This information is covered on the main website here
http://www.livingincrete.net/natinsIKA.html
and here
http://www.livingincrete.net/medical.html

Basically, short summary, you need Form S1 from the UK Dept of Health (if entitled to it, e..g pensioners) then go to your local IKA office in Crete with the S1 form and documents listed on above pages to obtain a health book. Info re doctors on the second link above.

raw
Posts: 19
Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2016 9:47 pm

Re: Registering with a doctor/Healthcare

Postby raw » Tue Jul 04, 2017 2:32 pm

Thank you for your reply Carol.

I had read the information you had provided, then when we received the advice from Greekbay we became confused.

We will go to the local office and see what they say.

Best wishes
R@W

filippos
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Re: Registering with a doctor/Healthcare

Postby filippos » Tue Jul 04, 2017 2:55 pm

You can qualify for state health care:
as a UK national in receipt of a UK State Pension (if one of a couple qualifies their spouse can be included as a dependent)
if you work here and contribute to the state system
emergency treatment under the EHIC scheme (that's intended to be temporary and is for a limited period (i.e. during holidays or temporary work assignments) but some people 'cheat' the system and, even as permanent residents, get away with using the EHIC card)

Apart from that you need private medical insurance.

We've been here 15+ years and have never formally registered with a GP. We had private insurance for the first couple of years but, being fundamentally healthy, we stopped that after a couple of years. After that, for minor ailments we either went to the local pharmacy or the nearest GP. In some areas there are also local health centres which will provide emergency care or treat minor ailments.

Some differences between the UK NHS and here take a little getting used to.
With most doctors here, including specialists, it's OK to just turn up, wait and you'll be seen. Depending on time spent in consultation,as a private patient, you'll generally be charged anything from €10 to about €40 by a GP and €40+ by a specialist. As a State system patient you may be charged between €0 and €?????
As a private patient you pay the full cost of any prescription but if qualified for the State system only a proportion (I think 25%).

If you need blood tests, X-rays or scans etc., the GP or specialist will usually send you to a private biological lab or clinic (of which there are many). On completion of the tests you collect the results and take them back to the doctor for discussion. Results of simple tests are often available on the same, or following, day: others may need 2-4 days. You are responsible for keeping your own records, X-ray films, scan results etc. Some clinics are 'walk-in'; at others you need an appointment but the doctor will know.

Recent first hand experience: Needed lower back and hip X-rays. Without prior arrangement went to (allegedly) the most expensive clinic in the area. Reception advised there would be a 10-15 mins wait. Joined queue. Technician called me in (and recognised me from a visit three years earlier). Two X-rays taken; short wait then handed two X-ray films. I was on my way within 40 minutes, wallet lighter by €17.
Also 5 or 6 visits to GP with said back problem. First visit €40, subsequent visits nothing.

As part of annual service GP wanted ECG and ultrasound heart scan. Phoned recommended (highly qualified) cardiologist and made appointment for next day (remembered to take chest X-ray films). ECG, very thorough u/s scan, report of findings, brief lifestyle consultation took 70 mins. Left with ECG print-out, CD of u/s scan and written report for GP. Cost: €50 (with full tax receipt). 40 mins follow-up consultation 10 days later: no charge.

Kilkis
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Location: Near Chania

Re: Registering with a doctor/Healthcare

Postby Kilkis » Tue Jul 04, 2017 4:54 pm

A slight addition to Filippos' post.

If you qualify for an S1 form, which I think is now ONLY issued to people in receipt of a State Pension, and hence an IKA Health Book, the book will contain the name of the Pathologos (approximetaly equivalent to a GP) that you have been assigned to. That does not mean that you have to use that one but sometimes an alternative IKA Pathologos might refuse to treat you and send you back to the one named. It has never happened to me but I know people who have experienced this.

If you think you qualify for an S1 form then you need to ask DWP in the UK, see http://www.nhs.uk/nhsengland/healthcare ... broad.aspx contact OVERSEAS.HEALTHCARE@DWP.GSI.GOV.UK. It is no good going to an IKA office in Greece until you have the S1 form.

If you don't qualify for an S1 form then technically to reside in Greece for more than 3 months you should have private medical insurance. You then use a doctor listed by the insurance company. Even if you decide to pay privately for your own healthcare there is an advantage in using the same Pathologos and the same specialists whenever possible since they will know your history even though you keep your own records.

Warwick

raw
Posts: 19
Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2016 9:47 pm

Re: Registering with a doctor/Healthcare

Postby raw » Tue Jul 04, 2017 10:00 pm

Thank you for the very helpful posts.
Very interesting and requires some lateral thinking.

I do appreciate people taking time to pass on such valuable information. Many thanks.
R@W

Yin&Yang
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Location: Megala Horafia/Aptera

Re: Registering with a doctor/Healthcare

Postby Yin&Yang » Wed Jul 05, 2017 8:23 am

And if you do go down the S1 route, then by doing a search on the forum, you will find details of where your nearest IKA office is and which documents you will need to take with you.

Also, if you are of pensionable age, you can join your local ΚΑΠΗ club which will make you eligible for reduced prescription charges.
Someday is now : )

bobscott
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Location: Kokkino Horio

Re: Registering with a doctor/Healthcare

Postby bobscott » Wed Jul 05, 2017 12:37 pm

Yin&Yang wrote:
Also, if you are of pensionable age, you can join your local ΚΑΠΗ club which will make you eligible for reduced prescription charges.


That's a new one on me. What and where is it in apokoronas area please?
Yesterday today was tomorrow. Don't dilly dally!

Kilkis
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Location: Near Chania

Re: Registering with a doctor/Healthcare

Postby Kilkis » Wed Jul 05, 2017 1:08 pm

You've not been paying attention Bob. See this earlier thread.

Warwick

BST
Posts: 319
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Re: Registering with a doctor/Healthcare

Postby BST » Wed Jul 05, 2017 2:09 pm

NB EHIC cards.... No mention of "emergency" in UK Gov regs. After paying in for decades and not taking a penny out, I feel entitled to use it until I am ancient enough to get my state pension. If I'd been born a couple of years earlier...........Anyway, it's down to the health provider at the end of the day! :D

Kilkis
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Joined: Sat Apr 21, 2007 3:58 pm
Location: Near Chania

Re: Registering with a doctor/Healthcare

Postby Kilkis » Wed Jul 05, 2017 2:50 pm

You are correct that it is not just for emergencies BUT I would draw your attention to the "Who can apply for a UK issued EHIC?" on the about the EHIC web site. That makes it clear that, with the exception of a few categories, you are ONLY entitled to a UK issued EHIC if you are ordinarily resident in the UK. Anybody living permanently in Crete for a number of years is certainly NOT ordinarily resident in the UK and so NOT entitled to a UK issued EHIC unless they fit in one of the special categories. The special categories are:

    1 you receive a UK State Pension or exportable UK benefit and have a UK-issued S1 form (certificate of entitlement) registered in your country of residence
    2 you are a worker posted to work in another EEA country or Switzerland by your UK employer, or a frontier worker living in the EEA and working in the UK
    3 you are a family member of a posted worker or of someone working in the UK and you are not covered in your own right by the EEA country you reside in
    4 you are a student going to another EEA country or Switzerland to study

Warwick

raw
Posts: 19
Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2016 9:47 pm

Re: Registering with a doctor/Healthcare

Postby raw » Wed Jul 05, 2017 3:22 pm

A little update:

We did go to the IKA office in Sitia and the lady was very helpful indeed.

Yes we need an S1, which we will not get, but that is not a deal breaker. I consider any information, good or bad to be a positive step. With knowledge it is possible to move one way or the other, without knowledge one is left always looking backwards. It is not possible to move forwards, looking backwards!

We have many other options which we will consider. Its good to get the facts before committing and its good to be able to use a medium such as this which has already proved to be most valuable.

Have a lovely afternoon and evening.
R@W


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