Finland ranks fourth in Europe in terms of healthcare in the Healthcare Consumer Index. In terms of price and quality, treatment in this country can be the best option for a foreigner who wants to improve his health in one of the most developed European countries.
The high level of medical care is due to the structure of the Finnish political system in this area, since annually about 9% of the country’s budget is allocated to healthcare. On average, one person spends about 2500-3000 euros per year. The basis of municipal funding is taxes, and if they are not enough to provide primary health care services, then the municipality is entitled to receive a state subsidy.
Thanks to such a system in Finland, standard treatment for citizens of the country and foreigners permanently residing in it is practically free, since almost all costs are compensated from the state budget. In addition, many medicines that are needed for chronic diseases are also available without payment. However, if you do not want to waste time waiting, especially when it comes to complex treatment that must be carried out promptly, then in this case you will have to resort to paid services.
Medical care in this country is carried out in accordance with the requirements of the World Health Organization. The training and licensing of doctors is also carried out according to WHO rules. It takes about 12 years to train as a doctor in this country, which is longer than in neighboring European countries. Therefore, it is practically impossible for a specialist who has received a medical education abroad to get a job in a medical institution in Finland. In total, about 2,000 qualified doctors work in the country.
It is worth noting the technical equipment in the medical institutions of the country: even small regional hospitals have all the necessary equipment for the diagnosis and rehabilitation of patients. And large medical centers use modern computer technology and the latest methods of laboratory research, including bioresonance diagnostics and thermoscopy.
Benefits of medicine in Finland
According to statistics, Finland has the lowest level of postoperative complications and nosocomial infections in Europe, so many foreigners, when it comes to serious surgery, prefer to go to this country for surgery. For Russians, an additional advantage of Finnish medical tourism is the fact that Finland is practically next door for residents of the European part of Russia.
According to EuroCare, Europe’s largest cancer life expectancy study, Finland ranks first in the effectiveness of breast cancer treatment, surpassing even Germany in this area. Suomi is also a leader in the treatment of head and neck cancer, ranks third in the treatment of prostate cancer and fourth in the treatment of bowel cancer. It is also important that doctors in Finland will never treat a patient if they are not sure that they can help him, and will not offer unnecessary procedures to increase the amount of the bill.
Free and paid medicine
As in many countries of the world, medicine in Finland is divided into free and paid. It is important to know that in this country, private medical care does not replace basic and specialized, but complements them. Private medical institutions include private clinics, dental and physiotherapy rooms, private practitioners’ offices.
Any resident of the country can get a free medical care option if he has a policy. To do this, you must contact the clinic at the place of residence. In this situation, it is realistic to get a free consultation, diagnosis and treatment from some specialists. However, before you get to a doctor of a narrow specialty, you need to be examined by a therapist who will write a referral, which can take some time.
Also, the lack of basic medical care is the lack of the opportunity to undergo free serious laboratory and diagnostic tests, and the treatment of rare diseases. For these purposes, there are several special university clinics in the country. Examination and treatment in them are covered by insurance, but the patient has to pay a part of the cost of the services provided. This area is already called specialized medical care.
In addition to basic and specialized medical care, there are private medical institutions in the country. There, the cost of services is high, so wealthy people go there or if there is an urgent need to quickly get to the doctor. It is often more profitable for patients to take package offers, since their prices are fixed, which eliminates the risk of additional payments. KELA health policy holders can cover the costs of some services in private clinics.
The initial consultation can be 50-200 euros, blood sugar testing – 35 euros, ECG – 200 euros, MRI – 500-1500 euros. But prices may vary depending on the chosen clinic. All medical institutions in Finland provide final payment before the services are provided. It is also important to know that in this country it is very important to be on time for an appointment with a doctor (this applies to both free and paid options). In the event that the patient cannot get to him, then it is necessary to cancel the visit in time – usually the day before, otherwise a fine will be issued.
You can call the Finnish emergency medical service at 112. However, this does not mean that the ambulance staff will arrive on the first call: the ambulance leaves only if the situation is critical and there is a threat to life. And a high temperature, a broken arm or high blood pressure are not reasons why you should worry the emergency service. The bill for ambulance services (about 20 euros) arrives in the mail a few days later.