How to Enroll in the Public Healthcare System in Kazakhstan

A primer on how to enroll in the public healthcare system in Kazakhstan.
|-How to Enroll in the Public Healthcare System in Kazakhstan

If you’re planning to enroll in the public healthcare system in Kazakhstan, this article covers the requirements for foreigners to be able enroll in the public healthcare system, the steps involved and more.

The public healthcare system in Kazakhstan is known as the Unified National Health System. It is a state-funded system that provides a wide range of medical services to all residents of the country. The quality of healthcare in Kazakhstan has improved significantly over the years, with the government investing heavily in modernizing hospitals and clinics, training healthcare professionals, and improving access to care. However, it is worth noting that the quality of care can vary, particularly between urban and rural areas.

Healthcare in Kazakhstan is not mandatory, but most residents use the system due to its affordability. The cost of healthcare is generally low, with many services provided free of charge or at a nominal fee. However, there are also private healthcare providers in the country, which offer a higher standard of care but at a higher cost.

Eligibility for Foreigners

Foreigners who are legally residing in Kazakhstan, such as those with a work permit or residency permit, are eligible to enroll in the public healthcare system. However, it is important to note that the process can be complex and time-consuming, particularly for those who do not speak Kazakh or Russian.

Steps for Enrolling in the Public Healthcare System

  1. Obtain a residency permit: Before you can enroll in the public healthcare system, you must first obtain a residency permit. This can be done through the Migration Service of the Ministry of Internal Affairs.
  2. Register with the local health department: Once you have your residency permit, you will need to register with the local health department in your area. This involves filling out a registration form and providing proof of your residency permit.
  3. Obtain a health insurance card: After registering with the local health department, you will be issued a health insurance card. This card will allow you to access healthcare services in Kazakhstan.

It is important to note that even with a health insurance card, not all services are covered by the public healthcare system. Some services, such as certain specialist treatments and medications, may require out-of-pocket payment.

Alternative Options for Healthcare

If you are not satisfied with the quality of care provided by the public healthcare system, there are several private healthcare providers in Kazakhstan. These providers offer a higher standard of care, but at a higher cost. Many foreigners living in Kazakhstan choose to take out private health insurance to cover these costs.

It is also worth noting that many expatriates living in Kazakhstan choose to travel to neighboring countries, such as Russia or Turkey, for more complex medical procedures. This is due to the perceived higher standard of care in these countries.

In conclusion, while the public healthcare system in Kazakhstan is accessible and affordable, it may not meet the expectations of all foreigners. Therefore, it is important to consider all your options and make an informed decision about your healthcare when moving to Kazakhstan.

Betsy Burlingame Betsy Burlingame is the Founder and President of Expat Exchange and is one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. She launched Expat Exchange in 1997 as her Master's thesis project at NYU. Prior to Expat Exchange, Betsy worked at AT&T in International and Mass Market Marketing. She graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with a BA in International Business and German.

Some of Betsy's articles include 12 Best Places to Live in Portugal, 7 Best Places to Live in Panama and 12 Things to Know Before Moving to the Dominican Republic. Betsy loves to travel and spend time with her family. Connect with Betsy on LinkedIn.

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