Health care in Latvia
The classification of health care in Latvia suggests the following:
- Primary health care – the first stage of interaction or contact between patients and the provider of health care services (family doctor, assistant of the doctor, nurse, accoucheuse or midwife, dentist, assistant of the dentist, nurse of the dentist and sanitarian).
- Secondary health care – specialized ambulatory and stationary health care, orienting to emergency, acute or planned type health care (which is provided by an ambulatory medical institution, in the ambulatory department of a hospital, in the institution of emergency medical care, in a day patient facility, or in a hospital).
- Emergency medical care - sudden falling ill or trauma, as a result of which the life of the victim is in danger.
- Tertiary health care – highly specialized health care services, which are provided in specialized medical institutions by specialists or professionals of multiple fields of medicine, who in turn have extra qualification.
In Latvia, accordance with the point 17 of the Law on Medical Treatment, health care services that are paid by the state can be received by:
- citizens of Latvia;
- non-citizens of Latvia;
- citizens of the member countries of the European Union, the member countries of the European Economic Area and citizens of the Switzerland Confederation, who stay or dwell on the territory of Latvia due to employment or as self-employed persons, as well as members of their families;
- foreigners, who have obtained a permit on permanent residence in Latvia;
- fugitives and persons, who have been assigned an alternative status;
- detainees, those persons who have been put under arrest, as well as those persons who have been sentenced to imprisonment.
Those joined in matrimony, both citizens of Latvia and non-citizens of Latvia, who have a residence permit for a certain period of time in Latvia, have the right to receive free of charge pregnancy care and child delivery aid from the State capital budget.
The persons who are not mentioned in point 17 of the present Law on Medical Treatment, receive medical services at a charge in accordance with the pricelist of a medical institution or the pricelist of services which are to be paid for, provided by a medical specialist.
It is possible to receive health care services paid by the State only in the medical institutions (not depending on the form of ownership or property), which have concluded an agreement with The National Health Service (NHS), information are on the NHS web page www.vmnvd.gov.lv.