The standard of healthcare in Poland is generally acceptable. Nevertheless, visitors from more affluent countries may find hospitals lacking some of the comforts that they may know at home. Likewise, there is a shortage of doctors and medical professionals, particularly in more rural areas.
There is a public health system in Poland which is known as the NFZ – the National Health Fund. Contributing is compulsory for all residents and workers in the country and deductions will be made at source from salary. Self-employed individuals must participate too with the total amount of contributions set at roughly 8.5%.
Many Polish residents opt to top up their state cover with private health insurance, but conversely, this is not for the more severe illnesses or conditions. Instead, this is to avoid the very long waiting lists for minor or trivial complaints. As an expat, you will undoubtedly benefit from some additional health coverage.
The more severe conditions are dealt with by the public sector which is where you find the best hospitals. The private sector does not have the resources or expertise to deal with critical illnesses.
Pharmacies are widely available within Poland, and some are open 24/7. Over the counter medicines, however, are more expensive than in other European countries.