If you don’t have valid health insurance before arriving in Belgium, you should contact a Belgian health insurer as soon as possible. Look at the list of authorised health insurers in Ghent.
The fee you will have to pay depends on your registration status.
If you have a health insurance card from your home country, you can get registered by a local health insurer. In that case, your medical expenses will immediately be refunded. No additional fee has to be paid.
After registering with a Belgian health insurer, you will receive your membership card package which include your Health Insurance Card (SIS card) and your personal membership stickers. In some cases, you will need these when visiting a General Practitioner, a specialist or a pharmacist. Make sure you always have those documents with you.
When you visit a General Practitioner, a specialist or a dentist, you will have to pay the full price for the consultation. However, you will receive a medical certificate which you will need to get part of the fee reimbursed (about 70% to 75% of the fee). You can either bring the certificate to your health insurer or you can post it to them. Don’t forget to put the sticker from your health insurer, showing your registrqtion number, onto the doctor or dentist’s certificate.
At the pharmacist you will have to show your SIS card and a medical prescription in order to get about 60% of the cost (immediately) reimbursed. If you do not have a SIS card, you will have to pay the full price. In that case, you should ask the pharmacist for a 704N form, which you will need to get part of the costs reimbursed by your health insurer.
When being hospitalized, you always have to show your SIS card or provisional certificate. The hospital will only charge you the expenses they do not get reimbursed by your health insurer. Ask to be put in a standard ward for which you will pay a standard official price. For a single or a double room you will have to pay a supplement that will not be reimbursed by your health insurance insurer.