Healthcare services in Ireland

Ireland has one of the finest medical care systems available anywhere in the world. It is composed of private and publicly operated hospitals and clinics. The publicly owned facilities are financed by regional health boards, under the Department of Health . Please see the Irish Medical Directory for hospital listings and other useful information and medical links.

Emergency Medical Services

If you are involved in an accident or other medical emergency, call the emergency operator on 112 from any telephone, and ask for the ambulance service. No coins or phonecards are required to call this number from a payphone. The location from where you are calling will be displayed on the payphone instructions notice. Calls to 112 can also be made from any mobile phone, including GSM mobile phones without a SIM card or roaming agreement.

Travel Insurance

Emergency medical services are available to residents of all EU member states on production of a form E111, usually without payment. Visitors from other parts of the world are advised to arrange appropriate medical insurance cover in advance of their trip. If you have a gold Visa, Eurocard or MasterCard check the travel insurance cover provided for you as a cardholder.

Prescription medicines

If you require medication, be sure to bring an adequate supply with you. Prescriptions must be written under Irish law before they can be dispensed - and this would involve a consultation with an Irish doctor, and perhaps other complications. Spread important medications over two or more items of baggage to minimise risk of loss, etc.

Health insurance for residents

If you are becoming resident in Ireland for a year or more, check with the Voluntary Health Insurance Board about what cover is available. It is a good idea to bring a certificate of your past health insurance claims record from your existing insurer.

Useful Links

Radiological Protection Institute of Ireland
National Disease Surveillance Centre
Healthy Flying - taking steps to avoid irresponsible airlines when travelling
RxList - Database of Drugs and Medicines
The Eastern Health Board
The Coombe Womens Hospital
The Food Safety Authority
Advice for Parents
Mental Health Association of Ireland
Eirpharm Irish pharmacy website

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