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Turkey Health Insurance Under Bilateral Agreements


Ken Grubb

Citizens of some countries can get free health insurance coverage in Turkey under a bilateral agreement between their country's government and the government of Turkey.

What is a Bilateral Healthcare Coverage Agreement?

A bilateral healthcare coverage agreement is a treaty between two governments, in which they agree to cover the medical expenses of each other's citizens when those citizens are visiting or living in the other country. In Turkey, if a citizen from a foreign country with a bilateral agreement needs medical treatment, they can be treated for free in any state hospital under Turkey's national health insurance plan, Genel Sağlık Sigorta (General Health Insurance) administered by the Sosyal Sigorta Kurumu (Social Security Administration). The Turkish government then sends the bill to the foreign citizen's government for reimbursement.

So if you're government has bilateral agreement with Turkey, you should register yourself at your local office of the Sosyal Güvenlik Kurumu (Social Security Administration, or SGK). Here's how to do it:

  1. Get the document from your government's national health insurance provider proving you're enrolled in your home country's national health insurance plan. The name and number of the document will vary according to nationality. You can contact your embassy or consulate or visit the website of your national health insurance plan to learn which document you need, or search Google with using the name of your country, "turkey," and "reciprocal healthcare agreement." The document will be in your home country's language and also in Turkish.
  2. Take that document, with your passport and residence permit (if you have one), to the local SGK office. They'll give you two numbers: a sicil numarası (registration number) and a YUPASS numarası (the number Turkey uses for citizens covered under an bilateral agreement). See below to learn more about the YUPASS numarası.

The Sicil Numarası (Registration Number)

The registration number is the one you'll need when you apply online for a residence permit using Turkey's online residence permit application website, at https://e-ikamet.goc.gov.tr/. In the section about health insurance coverage, it'll tell the system you're from a country that has a bilateral healthcare coverage agreement with Turkey. That number will be enough—you won't have to buy a private health insurance policy.

The YUPASS Number

YUPASS stands for Yurtduşı Provizyon Aktivasyon ve Sağlık Sistemi (Overseas Provision Activation and Health System). Your YUPASS number identifies you in this system. You're unlikely to need the YUPASS number. It's the registration number, not the YUPASS number, you'll need to apply for a residence permit and for being treated in a Turkish state hospital.

Countries Which Have Bilateral Healthcare Coverage Agreements with Turkey

If you're a citizen of one of these countries:

  • Albania
  • Austria
  • Azerbaijan
  • Belgium
  • Bosnia-Herzegovina
  • Croatia
  • Czech Republic
  • France
  • Germany
  • Hungary
  • Italy
  • Luxemburg
  • Macedonia
  • Montenegro
  • Netherlands
  • North Cyprus
  • Romania
  • Serbia
  • Tunisia

Then your country has a bilateral healthcare coverage agreement with Turkey.

If You're Over 65

If you're over 65 years of age, you're not required to have health insurance. But that doesn't mean you're entitled to free medical care. So regardless of your age, if you're country has a bilateral agreement with Turkey, register at your local SGK office.

Mertsel Residence Permit Application Services and Insurance

Mertsel Insurance provides residence permit application services and health insurance policies (among other services) for the Turkey Central community. Mertsel charges only according to what you need. You won't find a better price for the services they offer.

Within 24 hours after you send them all of the required information, Mertsel will:

  • Get you a tax number
  • Create your health insurance policy
  • Apply for and get your Residence Permit Registration Form
  • Set up your appointment at the immigration office and
  • Send you the documents for your application package.

You can get a free price quote from Mertsel according to your needs. Contact them by clicking below:

Ken Grubb, author.

As a special investigator for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and teacher for the University of Maryland, Ken Grubb has lived and worked in Turkey since 1997. He now lives in Antalya, where he researches and writes guides to help others live skillfully in Turkey.


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