health care in turkey

Every year hundreds of patients worldwide travel to Turkey for medical treatment. The efficiency of healthcare has grown over the past few years. It’s easy to find highly educated and bilingual medical professionals in Turkey.

A study recently released by The Lancet ranks Turkey’s healthcare system as 60th out of the 195 nations in the world. The growing number of medical schools and specialists located in Turkey is an indication of this. If you’re considering living in Turkey, It’s high time you learn about the country’s health system.

The Healthcare System In Turkey

Healthcare in Turkey is comprised of both private and public health services. It is provided by the Ministry of Health (MOH), universities, and the private sector to supply health services.

Expats and foreigners living in Turkey are eligible for benefits in two ways: Universal Health Insurance and private health insurance.

Indeed, the European Health Insurance Card is not valid in Turkey. Health insurance is also mandatory in Turkey. Therefore, you’ll require health insurance to get residence or permits to work.

Universal Health Insurance in Turkey

Universal Health Insurance covers most medical issues, including emergencies, pregnancy, and diseases. Social Security Institution (SGK) is the health authority in Turkey. To enroll, it is necessary to call the closest social security center. If you are enrolled in this program, you’ll also avail yourself of discounts at private hospitals. Be aware that public hospitals can be extremely overcrowded.

Universal Health Insurance

If you’ve been in Turkey for a calendar year or more, then you’re eligible to apply. You’ll be able to access all medical services for the cost of a monthly payment. The price for 2021’s monthly bill is around L850, which changes each year. The latest information is available through the centers that process applications for healthcare services in Turkey that cater to foreigners. There are about 600 social security centers across Turkey. If you are applying for SGK or your spouse, children under 18 may be eligible for healthcare for foreigners.

The treatment services that SGK covers:

Outpatient and inpatient services.

Accidents and illnesses at work

Birth, pregnancy, and associated costs

Discounts at private hospitals, clinics, etc.

Infectious illnesses

Health services that prevent illness

The treatment costs for foreigners as well as their dependents, excluding chronic illnesses

Private Health Insurance in Turkey

Private medical insurance coverage in Turkey through a monthly cost for an insurance provider. Private health insurance provides many advantages over SGK provides. There are shorter waiting times, the best quality healthcare, and fewer unplanned costs. Additionally, it is easy to find physicians who speak English within private healthcare facilities so that you can choose private healthcare instead of SGK.

Services for treatment insured by private insurance

Medical examination fees

Diagnostic tests cost money.

The cost of medication

Hospital services (operation anesthesia, medications, radiology, etc.)

Room, bed, food, and other expenses associated with hospitalization.

Corneal, kidney, pancreas, liver, heart, lung transplantation.

Radiotherapy and chemotherapy dialysis

Diagnostic tests for pathological, microbiological, biochemical imaging, radiological and other tests in hospitalization.

Costs for artificial limbs in the event of loss of limbs as a result of an illness or accident

Physical therapy postoperative

Treatments for medical conditions that last under 24 hours (food poisoning, basic burn treatment)

Treatments in the intensive care unit

Dentistry and nose caused by a traffic accident

The benefits you receive will depend on the insurance provider. Please ensure you know all the details before deciding on a health insurance plan.

Family Health Care Centers in Turkey

Additionally, there are family health clinics in every village or town. All you need to do is provide your passport or residency permit to visit these clinics for no cost. Additionally, certain doctors operate their practice. The doctors are not under an insurance provider and can set their fee schedule.

However, private clinics also offer professional care. There is no insurance coverage at such private clinics. You can contact them via the internet or visit their clinic to receive details.

Costs of Healthcare in Turkey for Foreigners

The healthcare costs in Turkey are lower compared to the prices in European countries. Patients in Turkey are more likely to opt for special procedures such as fertility treatments or hair transplants. Plastic surgery for cosmetic purposes is a popular option in Turkey’s healthcare applications.

The overall health infrastructure in Turkey is improving every day. The medical tourism industry is growing very well.

Dental care, for instance, is also priced between 50 and 70 percent lower than in the UK, Europe, and the US. If you opt for SGK and are a member of SGK, you will receive free dental care in government hospitals and universities. Based on your insurance policy, the cost of dental treatments may vary.

Medication and Pharmacies in Turkey

The cost of medication is also lower and more accessible. In contrast to the US or European countries, pharmacies are the only ones that offer medical services in Turkey. Insurance customers don’t have to pay for a variety of drugs. There are also pharmacies at every street corner.

Pharmacies are also places to seek advice and assistance with your medication. If you can express your issues, they will recommend you to a doctor whenever needed.

Typically, pharmacies are open every day from 9:00 until 19:00. The majority of pharmacies are closed on Sundays. However, you will always find an open pharmacy that is open all hours of the day.

Getting an Appointment or in Case of Emergency

It is possible to make an appointment by calling 182. If you’d prefer an area family health center, they’re available between 8.30 a.m. and 5.30 p.m. Tuesday through Friday. There is no need to make an appointment. However, there is a possibility of waiting for a few minutes.

In emergencies, medical treatment is available for free in Turkey. However, private hospitals can charge admission charges. But, when compared with other countries, you’ll likely pay less. In a serious accident, you can use both private and public ambulances. However, the arrival time of public ambulances is often slow. For emergencies, it is possible to contact 112.

Alternative Medicine in Turkey

Lokman Physicians practices are the pioneers of the alternative medical field in Turkey. Turkish people have developed natural treatment methods by mixing diverse plants and herbal remedies. Some of the traditional remedies for medicine include cupping and homeopathy.

Only licensed doctors can provide these treatments. Therefore, you must ensure that your clinic or doctor has a valid license. There are spas of high-quality centers throughout the nation that have thermal springs.


Turkey is a very popular destination for ex-pats wanting to live a luxurious life and a dependable healthcare system. The country has a citizenship-by-investment scheme for those who wish to move to the country.

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