Health insurance in The Netherlands: how does it work?

If you are planning to study, work or live in The Netherlands it is important to consider your health coverage as you are possibly required to apply for health insurance.

When is Dutch health insurance necessary?

A health insurance (in Dutch: zorgverzekering) in The Netherlands is mandatory as soon as you start working in Holland or when you emigrate to The Netherlands. Failing to apply for a health insurance within four months will likely result in a substantial fine, issued by the government.

However, applying for a Dutch health insurance is not allowed if you are only in The Netherlands temporally, for example, if you are in Holland for your studies and you don’t get a job on the side. In this case your home country insurance will suffice if you are from within the European Union (EU), the European Economic Area (EEA) or another country (like Australia) that has a social treaty with the Netherlands. If you are from outside the EU/EEA you may need to check whether your home country or travel insurance covers the necessary healthcare when abroad.

In any case, it is wise to check and verify this sort of information with your current insurance company prior to entering the Netherlands.

If you are unsure whether or not you are obliged to apply for Dutch health insurance, you can contact zorgverzekeringslijn.nl on +31 88 900 6960 for free and unbiased advice.

How to apply?

If you do need Dutch health insurance you can easily apply for one online. An insurance broker, like ZorgWijzer.nl (English site), can help you find a suitable and affordable insurance.

Although the application process is quite straightforward, it is mostly in Dutch. So using Google translate or a Dutch speaking friend/co-worker to help you, might be a good idea.

What does it cover?

The minimum cover that a Dutch insurance company has to offer already covers a substantial amount of medical expenses, such as:

  • Visiting a GP and treatments conducted by him/her
  • Emergency medical care in The Netherlands and abroad
  • Healthcare provided by (non-) physician specialists
  • Physiotherapy for certain chronic diseases
  • Treatments in a hospital or clinic
  • Medication
  • Midwifery
  • Psychological healthcare
  • Dental care (only up to 18 years of age)

How much does it cost?

Health insurance in The Netherlands is primarily funded by income tax. All other costs involve premiums (around 100 euros per month).

Furthermore, do note that using healthcare usually requires you to pay an excess which goes up to 385 euro a year. Once you have paid this amount, all further costs made by you will be reimbursed by the insurance company.

Residents with a limited income may apply for financial compensation (up to 88 euro per month) by the government. This can be done through the website of the Dutch tax authorities.

Need more information?

Do you need more information about a specific topic? Then it might be beneficial to visit or call ZorgWijzer for more information about health insurance in The Netherlands.

New to the Netherlands / Net in Nederland

In April of 2016 the New to the Netherlands website was launched. This is a website from the Dutch Public Broadcaster NPO where you can watch popular Dutch television programs and the daily Dutch NOS news all with Dutch, English and Arabic subtitles. By using a selection of on-demand media, New to the Netherlands wants to offer refugees and immigrants a guide to Dutch society and a unique way of learning Dutch.

New to the Netherlands is a so-called ‘experimental channel’ from the NPO and is financed with the own funding from the participating public broadcasters. An independent editorial staff selects videos from the existing programming from the participating public broadcasters. There are programs for all ages. One of our most popular programs is the NOS News which is posted on our website every weekday. The website is updated on a daily basis and we also offer a great Facebook page with lots of useful information including short original in-house clips and numerous interesting links in Dutch, English and Arabic.

In November of 2016 there were 5 internship positions created at New to the Netherlands for refugees with a media background. Since that time these five colleagues, who come from Syria, Iraq, Iran and Somalia, have been gaining practical work experience in the Netherlands which will help them secure other work later on. This group is very motivated and have proven themselves to be hard working and inquisitive. They often make short videos about their experiences here and other subjects of interest which are posted on the New to the Netherlands Facebook page.

New to the Netherlands is an initiative of the public broadcasters AVROTROS, BNN-VARA, KRO-NCRV, VPRO, EO, MAX and HUMAN and is supported by the NPO, NTR and the Dutch Institute for Image and Sound.
This platform has proven to be most successful and I wanted to share this information about our website with you are your readers. Being able to watch more than 25 shows for all ages with Dutch and English subtitles offers a rare opportunity to get a taste of home for the Dutch living abroad. The concept of our website has also had great success with Dutch people who want to learn English.

www.netinnederland.nl

https://www.facebook.com/netinnederland

 

European Summer Time starts Sunday 26th March 2017

This Sunday, at 2am, clocks in the Netherlands will “spring” forward one hour to 3am.  So if you are in the Netherlands, your digital clocks will probably automatically adjust, but you’ll need to change wall clocks.  If you’re in Australia and keep in contact with family or friends in the Netherlands, you may like to keep this change in mind.

Growing up in Queensland, Australia, I still remember the referendum for Daylight Savings Time in 1992, after a three year trial.  The proposal to continue with daylight savings was defeated with 54.5% where observations were made such as “the cows will get confused” and “the curtains will fade” though I sometimes wonder if the media made that up!

Here in the Netherlands, I like the change to summer time – firstly, it makes me feel like I have officially survived the winter!  It also heralds the start of the longer summer evenings, which I love.  The warmth is also on its way.

Clocks are moved an hour back again in the last weekend in October.

More information in Dutch: https://nl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zomertijd  and in English: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Summer_Time_in_Europe

 

2017 Feel At Home in The Hague Fair: Sunday 05 February

Below is the press release for the 2017 Feel at Home in The Hague Fair – but I’ll also add that I have been to many of these and also work a few hours a week with Billy at The Hague Online….highly recommend going to this Fair if you are in The Hague or surrounds, always a highlight of the year!  And if you are in Australia or elsewhere in the world, even just reading through this article and checking out the website will show what’s going on in The Hague – it’s a great international city-Renee


On Sunday 5th February 2017, The Feel at Home in The Hague Fair will celebrate its 10th Anniversary. The Fair will be officially opened by the Mayor of The Hague, Jozias van Aartsen, who will address a special welcome to the international community which plays such an important role in the region.

More than 4000 visitors attended the event in the Hague City Hall in 2016 and appreciated the unique ambiance created by the combination of 150 diverse exhibitors with a dynamic programme of activities and entertainment, workshops and seminars.  

A meeting point for the whole community 

No other expat event in the Netherlands engenders quite the same sense of community as The Hague Feel at Home Fair, where nearly a half of the stands are local sports and social clubs or volunteer organisations. These groups exhibit free of charge and relish the opportunity to network, advertise their activities and recruit new members.  

Showcase for Small Businesses 

Alongside these community groups are dozens of small business stands, many of them run by internationals who themselves moved to The Netherlands as an expat. They take great pleasure in animating the Fair with activities, tastings and performances which help them to connect with fellow internationals. 

A Free Seminar Programme

This year, Education will be the central theme, covering the range of educational choices from pre-school to adult education. Contributors to the Education Programme of talks, seminars and workshops  include many of region’s international schools and universities, and visitors will also have the opportunity to meet the speakers and panelists informally in the Education Zone.

There will also be a complementary series of seminars and workshops on all aspects of life in The Netherlands, from buying a house to learning about Dutch culture. Attendance at all seminars and workshops is free.

Entertainment and Food 

The day is made richer through a lively entertainment programme provided by our international schools, amateur clubs and local professional cultural organisations. This year, with its focus on culture, the Fair will be especially animated, with three different performance spaces – The Podium, Central Park and STET’s Children’s Theatre. 

Furthermore, The Feel at Home in The Hague Fair will be taking its entertainment programme out into the city centre, with some performances being repeated in De Bijenkorf department store. 

The icing on the cake is an International Food Court taking a culinary trip around the World, from Africa to India, Peru and back to Europe . The combination of these elements  gives the Feel at Home in The Hague Fair a unique flavour, which explains why the event plays such a special role as a meeting point for the entire international community. 

A Dynamic International City

As you might expect, around a fifth of our visitors last year were newcomers to The Netherlands, but perhaps more surprisingly, over a third had lived here more than 10 years! What these two groups had in common was a desire to learn more about things to do and events and activities happening in their region.   

 By showcasing the huge range of clubs to join and things to do locally, The Feel at Home in The Hague International Community Fair is a celebration of the region as an interesting and dynamic place for internationals to live. 

For Internationals and internationally-minded locals to come meet with friends and share in the pleasure of the great city of The Hague. 

Registering for Free Tickets 

Entrance is free for visitors who register in advance on our website: www.feelathomeinthehague.com 

On our website and  Facebook page visitors  can also keep up to date with developments on the Fair. 

Meet Dutch Australian Lenise – Eindhoven in Motion

I’m Lenise – an Australian living in Eindhoven, the Netherlands, with my Dutch husband and two young kids. We’ve been here since mid 2014, and after having no luck finding full time work, I realized I needed to make things happen rather than waiting for something to fall in my lap.

And so in the shower, where all good ideas happen, I had a brainwave. I love sport. I love writing. Join the two and I was sorted.

Let me take a few steps back. Eindhoven isn’t a huge city, but it does have a huge international community. Because of this, you can find all kinds of information in English – anything and everything about design, technology, art, education, work, health, news, and of course, tourist information. But when it comes to sport, it’s rare to find anything at all in English (unless of course it’s about PSV).  So what happens to all the internationals when at first (or many moons later) their Dutch isn’t the best? Do they have to miss out on all the great sporting opportunities that are available to them right on their doorstep?

I’ve also lived in a number of other countries, and sport and exercise have always been a constant. Not only can I get rid of the stress that can come with life abroad, but it also affords me the opportunity to meet new people, help with learning the language of the country I’m in, try something new, and have some fun. In my eyes, it’s a win-win.

And so my blog, Eindhoven in Motion, was born. It’s a kind of one stop shop for information and reviews about different sports clubs / organizations and events in and around Eindhoven. It’s still in the early stages but of course I have grand plans for it! Hopefully it will grow to include other areas in the Netherlands but for now I’m focusing on my new hometown. So come one over and have a read, follow the Facebook page, and pass it on ☺
https://eindhoveninmotion.wordpress.com/

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A Successful 2016 Keukenhof Season

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LISSE — Keukenhof ends a wonderful 2016 season with 1.1 million visitors. The visitors appreciated the flower show and rated it with an 8.9.

The most beautiful spring garden in the world is satisfied with this result. 2016 is the third consecutive year that Keukenhof has attracted over 1 million visitors. The beautiful, cool spring provided 8 weeks of flowers in full bloom.
The increasing number of visitors to Keukenhof is partly the result of a rise in the number of younger visitors. They experience Keukenhof more as a trendy park for a fun day out among the flowers.
Visitors came from more than 100 countries. Most notably, the number of visitors from France and America increased. China and Southeast Asia remain as emerging markets.

Despite the large number of visitors, the traffic flow around Keukenhof was good this season. In 2016, Keukenhof in cooperation with her partner Arriva, had more than 200,000 visitors who travelled using public transport.

The Keukenhof theme for 2017 is Dutch Design. Keukenhof expects Dutch Design to add inspiring events to the flower park, together with new partners.

Keukenhof is open in 2017 from 23 March to 21 May.

http://www.keukenhof.nl/en/