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Setting up your healthcare in The Netherlands is a priority, especially when you're a student and can get hit with 'uni flu' at at any time. Navigating the health system has been a bit of a challenge for some... so here is a bit of information on it.

So, how do I get to see a doctor?

In the Netherlands, the first step to receiving non-urgent medical care is going to the General Practitioner (GP). After you've registered in The Hague, you must register at a local GP. This will be your first point of contact for any and all medical issues and questions. Either your GP can treat you, or they will recommend you see a specialist.

There are several places to find GPs:

  • The International Health Centre the Hague

  • Dutch regular GPs


The GP assistant (a medical trained professional) will often also ask for your health insurance to verify that you are covered. Any bills will immediately be sent to your insurance company if you have a Dutch health insurance. You can read more about insurance here. If you do not have Dutch Health Insurance, you will receive a bill from the GP by mail which you must pay, and if you have alternate insurance, can claim it independently.

Important notices

  • Please note that appointments with your GP are always covered by your insurance, but certain specialised treatments (such as testing your blood) may be charged under your deductible.

  • Dutch GPs are neighbourhood specific so make sure that you check the postcode of your residence carefully – the GP will only help you if they are in your postcode. The website of the GP will show the postcode they accept.

  • The GP will send prescriptions to their associated pharmacy and they can be collected immediately. Thereafter for a recurring prescription you can apply through an online portal and you will receive an email.

Mental health is extremely important to having an enjoyable and successful student experience. If you feel that something is hindering you from that in any way, it is important to seek help!


A good place to start is by talking to your study advisor and touching base with them regarding your expectations for the year and asking for tips on how to balance it all. Second, the next thing you can do is contact the Student Psychologist at Leiden University. They will be able to help you organise referrals and find a psychologist or psychiatrist separate from the university.

If you are experiencing severe psychological problems or feel an urgent need for psychological support, please contact your own GP directly and as quickly as possible.


In case of emergency, call 112. 

Mental Health

Important notices:

  • You have to visit your GP before you can consult a psychologist or psychiatrist. They will need to make a referral for you to the psychologist or psychiatrist before you can be accepted.

  • You can also privately contact a psychologist or psychiatrist, however, it will most likely not be covered by insurance.

  • You need to check how many sessions your insurance covers, and of those, how much of the price is covered. You can do this by calling your insurance or checking your policy paper.

  • Emergency contacts - Knowing who to turn to in emergencies can make a dramatic difference! We recommend that you save some numbers on your phone. Its always better to be safe than sorry.

For Alcoholics Anonymous: 020 625 6057     

For the Sexual Abuse hotline: 0900 899 8411

For the SOS helpline: 0900 0767

For ChildLine: 0800 0432

For the Discrimination Helpline: 0900 235 4354

For Residency Issues: 088 0430 430

For Suicide Helpline dial: 0900 0113

For the Gay & Lesbian Switchboard: 020 623 6565

For Gas or Electricity Emergencies and Outages: 0800 9009

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