Emergency health services
Emergency health services in Slovakia provide medical attention for illnesses or injuries requiring immediate treatment. Typical examples of injuries that may require emergency health services include those resulting from accidents, heart attacks or other sudden illnesses. Emergency health services are usually delivered by a GP, ambulance personnel or by attendance at the accident and emergency of an acute hospital. In the public health service, the ambulance service provides ambulance services for transporting seriously ill people to hospitals or between hospitals. Emergency ambulance services can be contacted by calling '112'. Slovakia is also using '155' for emergency medical aid. All calls are free and can be answered in Hungarian in some areas.
Unless you have a medical card, you may be charged for ambulance services. However, the practice varies and charges may be waived in certain cases, for example, in cases of hardship. There are a number of private ambulance services, including air ambulance services. You can call them and pay for their services in the normal commercial manner. There are also a number of volunteer ambulance organisations. They are generally used to provide immediate assistance at public events. Most public hospitals provide accident and emergency services. Anybody in Slovakia with a medical emergency is entitled to attend their accident and emergency departments. You may have to pay charges for public hospital services. People attending the accident and emergency department of a public hospital are prioritised on the basis of medical need. You may be required to wait for treatment if you have a non-urgent injury or illness.
Some private hospitals and clinics offer emergency services. You will be charged the full cost of care in private facilities. If you are a national of a member state of the EU/EEA or Switzerland and you are travelling or staying temporarily in Slovakia, you are entitled to receive medical care if you become ill or have an accident. These services are provided free of charge through the public health system on production of a valid European Health Insurance Card. If you are on a temporary visit to Slovakia and are not covered under EU regulations, you will have to pay the cost of attendance at an accident and emergency department. If you are not a national of an EU/EEA member state, or from Switzerland, you may also be charged the full economic cost of any further treatment, including medical care in an acute hospital. Therefore taking out private medical travel insurance before travelling is recommended.
Emergency health services