Life in Croatia: medical care

Croatia is one of the European countries with the highest life expectancy, which, according to the latest official WHO data, is 78.3 years.

This is significantly higher than the European average, which is facilitated not only by a favorable environmental situation, but also by a developed healthcare system. Thanks to these factors, as well as a healthy diet and a high level of safety, life in Croatia seems very prosperous, and more and more citizens of Russia and Ukraine are choosing this Balkan country for temporary or permanent residence.

Medicine in Croatia

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After Croatia joined the European Union, which took place back in 2013, the quality of medical care began to gradually reach a fundamentally new qualitative level. Medicine in Croatia developed at an accelerated pace – especially in large cities, where modern equipment was installed in hospitals and clinics.

Even earlier, the E-Health project was introduced in the country, thanks to which all citizens of the country received a plastic health insurance card, which contains all the necessary information about the patient’s diseases, prescriptions written by doctors and serves as a means of payment in pharmacies. Medicines included in the preferential list are issued free of charge.

Public healthcare in Croatia is also completely free, accounting for approximately 4/5 of the entire sector.

The greatest attention is paid to cardiology, and there are several clinics in the country specializing specifically in diseases of the cardiovascular system.

Orthopedics and dentistry are also at a high level, and prices in private clinics in Croatia for dental treatment look quite affordable – from 50 euros with an average salary of about 865 euros per month (as of the end of 2019).

In recent years, medical tourism in Croatia, which has a number of balneological resorts, has become popular among foreigners. The unique sanatorium “Naftalan” in the city of Ivanic Grad, located near Zagreb, is known throughout the world. Here, patients with skin diseases (primarily psoriasis), joints and the central nervous system are treated with naftalan oil.

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Sanatorium “Naftalan” in the city of Ivanich Grad. Photo source:

North of Zagreb is another popular resort, “Krapinske Toplice” with radon thermal springs and mud. In addition, there are three clinics here that specialize in rehabilitation after injuries and operations, diseases of the cardiovascular system and problems of the musculoskeletal system.

Hospitals in Zagreb

In Zagreb itself, the capital of Croatia with a population of about 700 thousand people (according to 2019 data), there are more than thirty large hospitals, clinics and medical centers, both public and private. In the latter, service is provided on a paid basis, although its cost is significantly lower than in many EU countries. Thus, the price of an initial consultation starts from 40 euros, depending on the doctor’s specialization, and you can pay in cash in the national currency (kuna). A hospital stay with three quality meals a day will cost from 100 euros per day.

Almost all specialists speak one of the foreign languages ​​- most often English or German, but there are also staff who speak Russian. These medical institutions include Klinički bolnički centar Zagreb (Clinical Hospital Center Zagreb), which offers a wide range of services – including the radiosurgical method for treating tumors “Gamma Knife”, which few European clinics offer.

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Clinical Hospital Center Zagreb (photo source:

The following medical institutions also deserve attention:

  • Poliklinika IVF (Clinic of Gynecology, Obstetrics and Human Reproduction, founded by Velimir Šimunić in 1997 – No. 1 in Croatia for IVF procedures);

  • Klinički bolnički centar Sestre milosrdnice (Clinical Hospital Center of the Sisters of Mercy is one of the oldest hospitals in Southern Europe, on the territory of which more than 20 clinics and specialized institutes are based, as well as a nursing school);

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Clinical Hospital Center of the Sisters of Mercy

  • Specijalna bolnica Sveta Katarina (Special Hospital named after St. Katarina, which is a recognized leader in Croatia in the field of orthopedics, spine surgery and sports medicine);

  • Klinička bolnica Merkur (Clinical Hospital “Merkur”, the main areas of which include the treatment of diabetes, endocrinological diseases, metabolic disorders);

  • Poliklinika IMED (Croatia’s first dental clinic with a day hospital, a leader in the field of dental implantation. Also specializes in aesthetic surgery);

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Poliklinika IMED, photo source:

  • Poliklinika Bagatin (Over the more than 20-year history of its existence, about 12 thousand clients have used the services of this advanced medical center in the field of plastic surgery, dermatology, cosmetology and dentistry).

This list of leading medical institutions in Zagreb, thanks to which life in Croatia becomes more and more comfortable every year, is far from exhausted, and if desired, you can always find a hospital or clinic that meets the financial and other needs of the patient.

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