Student health insurance in Turkey: A step-by-step guide for 2023
Learn, by Gars Consulting Company, with comprehensive information, about health insurance in Turkey, the costs associated with it, and the types of health insurance that can be obtained.
Table of content
- Types of health insurance in Turkey
- Why do I need health insurance?
- Information about student health insurance
Types of health insurance in Turkey
One of the most comprehensive features of health insurance in Turkey is that it covers almost all categories of Turkish society and their age. But there's a difference in the type of health insurance, depending on the living status of the family or individual in the community:
1. Green Card Insurance - Yeşil Kart
The green card insurance or Yeşil Kart is intended for poor families, where the average income per capita is less than one-third of the net minimum wage, determined by the Ministry of Labour of Turkey.
The green card was introduced in accordance with Law No. 3816 issued on 1/1/2012. Under it, all family members can benefit from health services (treatment and medication) free of charge.
Applying for this insurance is for Turkish citizens only, and it is by submitting a request to the Solidarity and Social Assistance, at the District Commissioner, to which the home address is affiliated.
Then the application is evaluated within two or three weeks at least, and the applicant can follow up on the result of this application, through the government electronic portal (e-Devlet).
2. General Health Insurance - GSS
General health insurance is a system concerned with providing health services to Turkish citizens. This insurance, which was introduced as of January 1, 2012, ensures that citizens benefit equally from health services, regardless of their economic status.
Health insurance covers the father, mother, and children under the age of 18, as well as children who are studying in secondary school, and whose age is under 21, and children under the age of 25, for those who are at university.
General health insurance in Turkey is divided into two parts:
- Health insurance for workers in the public or private sectors, where the employer pays insurance premiums for the people working for him in the company. Employees and their families can benefit from the health assistance provided by the state, without any additional costs incurred by them.
- As for people without employment; They must pay premiums for health insurance, which is assessed at 3% of the value of the minimum wage, according to the amendments that took effect in 2017.
It should be noted that foreigners residing in Turkey are entitled to general health insurance, through the issuance of a work permit, registration in the Social Security Institution, and thus access to all health services.
3. Social Security Insurance - SGK
It is an abbreviation of the Social Security Institution of Turkey, which is a public institution established under the Social Security Institution Law No. 5502, approved on May 16, 2006. Social security systems are implemented, which benefit Turkish citizens.
This institution has established a system that provides certain services to citizens working in public and private institutions. Social security insurance includes health services, hospital treatment, discounts of approximately 20% of the price of treatment, and pension insurance on reaching retirement age.
Foreign citizens can benefit from social security insurance in Turkey, by working in a company and obtaining a work permit, which guarantees you the right to social security insurance naturally. The employer is also responsible for the extraction of such insurance and for the payment of its fees.
4. Bağkur Insurance
This insurance was approved by Resolution No. 5502 issued on May 16, 2006, by the Social Security Institution of the Ministry of Labor in Turkey.
In the Bağkur insurance, citizens who are unable to benefit from Social Security Insurance pay this institution a monthly amount and can therefore benefit from the pension scheme, after 15 or 20 years.
As for the services provided by this institution, they include health services, through which one can benefit from treatment in hospitals for free, with discounts in the price of medicine by approximately 20%.
Bağkur also provides insurance support for the infirm, and those who have reached old age, and takes care of the costs of death, and funeral expenses, for those insured under this insurance.
It should be noted that Bağkur insurance cannot be shared with other types of insurance at the same time, but can be contributed, paid to the wife and children until they benefit from the retirement system.
The value of the amount paid monthly to the Bağkur varies according to the profession, and the minimum wage, which is determined annually by the Ministry of Labor in Turkey.
Why do I need health insurance?
Unfortunately, there is no human being that does not suffer from certain diseases, which sometimes force him to visit the patient, as doctor's outfits have become inevitable in our daily lives.
On this basis, each of us is obliged to obtain health insurance, which eases the costs of screening in hospitals, and the prices of medicine in pharmacies.
Services covered by health insurance
The services enjoyed by health insurance holders fully cover the costs of medical care in public hospitals, which they receive through health insurance, including examination, treatment, diagnosis, medical analysis, radiography and etc.
Health insurance services also include treatment costs in private hospitals, but at relatively reduced prices, and health insurance services include the purchase of medicines, paying only 20% of the basic drug price.
Is health insurance mandatory?
Obtaining health insurance is mandatory from the legal authority, throughout the period of stay in Turkey, as it falls within one of the conditions set, in order to obtain the required residence permit.
Information about student health insurance
With regard to foreign students coming to study in Turkey, Turkish laws allow them to obtain their own residence permit from the immigration directorates in the state in which they reside.
According to this residence permit, the student can provide himself/herself with health insurance, free treatment at government hospitals, and at reduced prices at private hospitals.
Types of student health insurance
Foreign students can obtain one of the following types of health insurance:
- Private health insurance
Obtaining private health insurance is a prerequisite when obtaining a residence permit, of different types, from the Immigration Directorates in Turkey.
Private health insurance can be obtained from one of the private companies, which provides different types of this type of insurance, the most important of which are:
- Ordinary insurance for applications for residence or renewal: It covers the duration of the residence and many general medical aspects, but does not receive substantial deductions from the cost of treatment in private or government hospitals, and does not cover the price of the medicine, but is characterized by its low price and ease of access.
- Insurance for accidents, medical and analysis: This insurance covers the price of examinations, analyzes, and accidents in Turkish hospitals.
- Comprehensive insurance: Insurance companies provide a comprehensive type of health insurance, covering all types of treatments, operations, and accidents, but it is the most expensive type of insurance.
- Public health insurance
Under Turkish law, you have access to public health insurance, through getting one of the types of residence reserved for foreigners in Turkey, and through this health insurance you, with the exception of children over 18 years of age, are able to enjoy the free medical benefits provided to you at state hospitals.
Student health insurance rates
Health insurance prices for students in Turkey differ from one university to another, according to the state in which you reside, but in general, it can be said that the price of health insurance in Turkey for students is about 375 TL per year.
The following table shows the student health insurance rates, depending on the length of time covered, provided by the best health insurance companies:
Health insurance for 6 months
Health insurance for 9 months
0 - 18
19 - 25
26 - 30
Edited by Gars Consulting Company
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