For medical emergencies, dial 15 for SAMU (medical emergency team) or 18 for the Fire Department.
In France you can visit the doctor of your own choosing, specialist or generalist, in the private (doctor’s office, clinic, etc.) or public sector (hospital, dispensary, etc.). The country’s high-performance medical network provides every specialty. Doctors are either conventionné - in the state health system - or in the system with fees or not in the system. If the doctor is in the system, the price of your visit is set by Social Security and your primary health insurance fund will reimburse about 75% of your costs. The cost of a visit to the second category of doctor will vary, as Social Security authorizes a charge in excess of the statutory fee, but you will still be reimbursed on the same basis as for the first category of doctor, that is for about 75% up to the authorized limit. The doctors who are not in the state system at all set their own fees and Social Security will reimburse only a minimal amount. You can ask how much a visit costs when you telephone to make a doctor’s appointment. If you are a member of a mutual benefit society or carry complementary private coverage, all or part of the excess cost may be taken care of. Fees are payable as the visit ends, and it is left up to you to claim for reimbursement from Social Security and your private insurance plan. Note that alternative medicines like homeopathy are increasingly common in France and some doctors specialize in them, which can make these therapies partly reimbursable.
France has a number of public hospitals. Setting the care standard, these institutions are in the state system. Some private clinics are extremely well known, while others, more comfortable than the public hospitals, are clearly lacking in technical equipment. The hospitals have the equipment to conduct every kind of specialized examination by appointment. You can also get information from the:
Conseil national de l'Ordre des médecins
180, boul. Haussmann
Hours: 9 am to 12:30 pm and 2 pm to 5 pm
Reception: 9 am to 6 pm
A list of doctors and hospitals is also available. This list is provided for convenience and information purposes only.