Health insurance in the Netherlands is mandatory if you are on a long-term stay and is designed to cover the cost of medical care. As a rule, all people with a Dutch employment contract must have a Dutch health insurance even if they are also insured for healthcare in their home country. From the moment you start working, you are subject to Dutch social security legislation and thus, have to obtain (at least) the basic health insurance (Basisverzekering) package. The basic package costs around 100 euros per month and covers: general medical care (including medical specialists, hospital care, GP appointments etc.), medicine prescriptions, patient transport (ambulance services), paramedical care, pre and post-natal care, midwifery services etc. However, you may want extra coverage for additional medical treatment (extensive dental care, physiotherapy etc.) and that is where private health insurance providers compete. After you have chosen your Dutch health insurance provider you should register with a general practitioner / family doctor (Huisarts). Every time you need a specific examination you should first liaise with your family doctor and he / she will refer you to the right hospital / clinic.