If you live in Ireland and intend to stay here for at least one year, then you are entitled to a range of health services either free of charge or at a reduced cost through the public system. If you’re ok with long waiting lists, then you’ll be fine under the public system.
However, if you want to choose your doctor/consultant or where and how fast you’re treated, then that’s the major advantage of having private health insurance.
Of course, some charges still apply in public hospitals if you are admitted overnight as a public patient. From January 1 2017, in-patients are charged a standard fee of €80 per night, up to a maximum of €800 in one year.
We hope that you find this information useful in making health insurance a little simpler to understand. If you’re still confused, you’ll find more answers on our FAQ page.
The HIA (Health Insurance Authority Ireland), a statutory regulator of the private health insurance market also has a glossary.