Health insurance

Anyone who resides or works in the Netherlands is required, under the Health Insurance Act (Zorgverzekeringswet), to take out insurance with a health insurer of their choice to cover medical expenses within four months of registering at the Town Hall.

 Tip: Do not wait until the end of the four months to take out the health insurance. Even if you sign up in the last day, they will make you pay the months behind.

Mandatory health insurance/Basic package

The government decides on the cover provided by the standard package. Health insurers must accept anyone who applies for the standard insurance package, regardless of their age or state of health.

The mandatory health insurance covers:

  • Basic medical care; including care provided by general practitioners, medical specialists and obstetricians
  • Hospital treatment
  • Maternity care
  • Limited therapies such as physiotherapy, speech therapy, occupational therapy and dietary advice
  • Medical devices
  • Medical products

Supplementary insurance/Additional insurance

Covers expenses that are not included in the mandatory health insurance. Additional insurance is not obligatory and you are not obliged to take out the standard package and additional insurance with the same insurance company. Insurance companies are not obligated to take you on for additional coverage.

It covers, for example:

  • Dental care for adults
  • Physiotherapy
  • Glasses and contact lenses
  • Homeopathic or other alternative medical products


There are around 40 health insurers that offer the mandatory health insurance and optional supplementary insurance packages.

The cost of a basic insurance is pretty much the same across the board. Doing a comparative shopping becomes worth your while if you are interested in additional coverage. There are several websites that allow you to compare insurance companies and coverage:

 Tip: Anderzorg ( is a health insurer that offers good prices. They are also helpful when any question is raised.