Croatia is adopting the euro on 1st of January 2023 - impact on private health and travel insurances
Croatia is receiving a lot of attention as it looks to swap currencies at the beginning of 2023 (from kunas to euros). This is likely to cause some interesting changes in a wide range of industries, including the private healthcare sector.
Let’s take a look at what could be coming.
Overview of Healthcare in Croatia
Firstly, what is the current state of Croatia’s public healthcare system?
You most likely already know that the healthcare standard in Croatia is considered to be good. The country has a well-developed healthcare system, with a network of hospitals, clinics, and other medical facilities that provide a range of medical services to its citizens. If you’re visiting Croatia, you will need travel insurance, even if you have GHIC or EHIC cards.
Similar to other European countries, Croatia has a universal healthcare system, which means that all citizens and legal residents are entitled to receive healthcare services free of charge or at a reduced cost (the government funds this mainly through tax collection).
Compared to others, Croatia has a high number of physicians and other healthcare professionals per capita, and the country's healthcare system is well-equipped with modern medical technology. So when you use Croatian hospitals and clinics, they are clean and well-maintained.
Like in most countries, the standard of healthcare between different regions and facilities can differ. As a result, private healthcare facilities in some areas may offer higher quality services than public facilities, but these typically come at a higher cost to patients.
The private healthcare sector in Croatia
So, how does the private healthcare sector work in the country?
If you want to use private health benefits in Croatia, the process will be similar to other countries’ private healthcare. This means that healthcare facilities, such as hospitals and clinics, are owned and operated by private entities rather than the government.
You have to pay for private services on a fee-for-service basis, which means patients and outpatients pay for each service they receive. Otherwise, you’ll pay on a subscription basis, where a monthly or annual fee is paid for access to the range of medical services that are offered. Foreign citizens receiving hospital treatment in Croatia are normally charged a fee higher than Croatian citizens.
What will happen to the private health market in Croatia after adopting the euro?
It is difficult to predict with certainty what the impact of Croatia adopting the euro will be on the Croatian private health market. However, we’ve listed a few potential impacts that you may see happen:
Increased trade and investment: As a member of the eurozone, Croatia may see an increase in trade and investment from other eurozone countries. This could lead to an influx of new companies entering the private health market due to the new travel security, potentially increasing competition and driving down prices (great news if you want to use private healthcare).
Improved economic stability: The adoption of the euro may lead to increased economic stability in Croatia, as the country will be using a common currency with other eurozone countries. It’s very likely that this will lead to increased confidence among investors and consumers, potentially driving up demand for private healthcare services.
Exchange rate risks: While the adoption of the euro may reduce exchange rate risk for Croatian businesses, it could also lead to higher costs for imported goods and services, such as medical equipment and pharmaceuticals. This could potentially lead to higher prices for private healthcare services.
Overall, the impact of the euro on the private health market in Croatia will depend on a range of factors, including the overall state of the economy and the competitiveness of the healthcare sector. Therefore, you should keep a close eye on the sector to see how it adjusts to this big change.