General information about healthcare in the Netherlands
General practitioner (GP)
The initial contact for all medical issues in the Netherlands is the GP (huisarts = family doctor). His main work is treating patients for basic medical problems and providing consultations for most of the general health questions. He serves as a link for hospitalisation or to further investigations by specialists, physiotherapists etc. The GP keeps your record up to date and prescribes your medication. It is therefore essential, especially when your health is a problem, to look for a GP nearby after settling in the Netherlands.
Sometimes in contrary of other countries, the dutch GP’s are generally cautious in prescribing medicines especially antibiotics and making referrals to hospitals or other health institutions (called second line health care).
Dutch health care system is divided into 3 categories (lines):
|GP and supplementary care (physiotherapists, dentists etc.)|
|Second line (tweede lijn)||Non academic hospitals for less specialised care.|
|Academic hospitals (only for complicated health issues and research)|
In general the GP makes a referral to a particular second line hospital. In case of a very complicated and severe health problem it will be a third line hospital.
Second line hospitals nearby (less than 50 km) are Martini Ziekenhuis Groningen, Ommelander Ziekenhuis Scheemda, Wilhelmina Ziekenhuis Assen and Nij Smellinghe in Drachten.
Third line (university) hospital nearby is UMCG in the centre of Groningen
More useful information about Dutch healthcare esp. about GP’s, can be found for instance in the following links:
https://www.iamexpat.nl/expat-info/dutch-healthcare-system/general-practitioners-gp-doctors-netherlands and https://www.ziekenhuisamstelland.nl/en/patients/dutch-health-care-system/general-practitioner/
GP office Aduard
Our practice offers you several online options (see “patiëntenomgeving/ patiëntenomgeving’). In using these options you have to make an online account. In order to safeguard your privacy we ask you to show your identity card to one of our medical assistants in order to check your identity and data and when necessary to fill in some extra information. A personal email address is necessary to activate your account.
We can provide you with an English version of the “Praktijkfolder = General patient information” of our GP office). In this folder you can read (in short!) about the time schedule, holidays and services of our practice.
Look also for “Nieuws=News” information on holidays / education of personal. When closed medical care, in case of emergency, is given by Huisartsenpraktijk Niekerk (www.huisartsenpraktijkniekerk.nl)
Important! Change of working method to reduce the spread of the covid-19 virus in the practice
Call first, if you want to see your GP. Do not come at the practice if there are any signs of a covid-19 infection (nasal cold, runny nose, sneezing, sore throat, coughing, shortness of breath, elevated temperature, sudden loss of taste and smell)
When entering the practice you must sterilize your hands at the hygiene pole in the waiting room. Wearing a face mask is strongly advised! In case of an appointment, do not enter the practice too early to prevent a crowded waiting room and enter preferably alone.
Information on the covid-19 virus for citizens in the Netherlands
For detailed information about the coronavirus look for the RIVM (=National Institute for Public Health and the Environment) website (https://www.rivm.nl/en/novel-coronavirus-covid-19) and the site of the Dutch government (https://www.government.nl/topics/coronavirus-covid-19). These sites give you general information about symptoms, prevention and corona healthcare.
Non English speakers are referred to Pharos website (https://www.pharos.nl/coronavirus/) for general information in several languages.
Recently, the Dutch Government has launched a coronavirus dashboard app for desktop and mobile phone, which provides you with an up-to-date overview on the situation in the Netherlands (and in specific areas) (https://www.coronadashboard.rijksoverheid.nl).