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National Health Insurance

National Health Insurance

All legal residents of Taiwan are eligible for National Health Insurance (NHI) benefits for illness, injury, and childbirth. The vast majority of diseases are covered under the insurance program. Foreigners holding Alien Resident Certificates (ARC) who have resided in Taiwan for 4 months are required to enroll in the NHI program. Foreign employees holding an ARC should enroll in the NHI from their first day of employment. The effective date of NHI coverage for foreigners who have not yet received their ARC is the date the ARC is issued.

Foreign employees should enroll in the NHI program through their employer in Taiwan. Other resident foreigners can find enrollment information on the Bureau of National Health Insurance website. The website offers convenient e-services in English, including online reservations for the NHI program, enrollment services, and information on Bureau of National Health Insurance (BNHI) branch offices. English-languages services are available at the English and Administrative Service counters at BNHI branch offices. For questions concerning NHI IC cards, another option is the BNHI hotline, which offers English service. All insurees must pay a monthly premium. Insured individuals encountering illness, injury, or accident, or who are pregnant, should apply for care using their own IC card. Comprehensive medical care will be provided, and the only out-of-pocket cost to the patients is the applicable co-payment.

National Health Insurance Information

National Health Insurance English Service Line: 0800-030-598

Bureau of National Health Insurance:National Health Insurance Administration Ministry of Health and Welfare

Emergency Phone Numbers: 119 & 110

“119” and “110” are the emergency phone numbers in Taiwan.”119” is used to report a fire or request emergency rescue, and “110”is the police and traffic hotline. Both “119” and “110” are toll-free numbers. The numbers can be dialed without inserting coins from a public phone, and cell phones can reach these numbers even without a SIM card installed.

To enable foreign nationals to use these emergency phone numbers, English language services have been enhanced in police and firefighting units nationwide. English speaking personnel are always available at 119 dispatch centers and 110 duty command centers to assist foreigners. Whatever the emergency – a fire, traffic accident, poisonous snakebite, or an encounter with a hive of bees – you can dial “119” for help. Please be sure to describe the incident as well as your location to the operator. Firefighters or ambulances closest to the location will be dispatched immediately.

“110” is a tool for reporting cases to the police in Taiwan. When dialing “110,” it is essential to inform the police the location of the incident as well as relevant details. The Duty Command Center will dispatch police officers from the nearest precinct immediately.

“112”: The International Emergency Phone Number

Even if international roaming service has not been turned on for your cellular phone, you can dial “112” regardless of where you are. Your emergency call will be transferred to the emergency medical system of the country in which you are located. If you dial “112” while in Taiwan, the system, operating in Chinese and English, will transfer your call to “119” or “110” – Taiwan’s emergency phone numbers.

English-Language Service in Hospitals

Taiwan hospitals have been encouraged to provide signs in both English and Chinese. Currently, 43public hospitals have participated in appraisals of their English-language services. Private medical institutions have also been encouraged to offer medical services in both Chinese and English. Signs in Chinese and English are available at most public and private hospitals. Staff members or volunteers at hospitals are able to assist foreign with registration, and directions to consulting rooms, medical bill payment, and medicine pick-up. They can also help patients to fill out forms. Most doctors are also able to communicate with patients in English. Large hospitals, such as Taipei Veterans General Hospital and Taipei Medical University-Wan Fang Hospital, provide information on medicines in both Chinese and English, so that foreign patients will know how to use their medications correctly. For hospitals not offering this bilingual information, a service counter is available to help.

Some hospitals have hired employees or recruited volunteers who speak non-English foreign languages as well. They can provide interpretation and translation to patients not fluent in either Chinese or English. These efforts seek to create a welcoming environment for foreign patients.

Hospitals providing English service

Online English registration

Tri-Service General Hospital

Taiwan Min-Sheng Hospital

English registration by telephone

China Medical University Hospital

Taipei Medical University-Wan-Fang Hospital

Show Chwan Memorial Hospital

Kaohsiung Medical University Chung-Ho Memorial Hospital

Buddhist Tzu Chi General Hospital

World-Class Healthcare: Serving the World

Taiwan also maintains a medical presence abroad. Taiwan’s International Cooperation and Development Fund brought together medical institutions in 2006 to form the International Healthcare Cooperation Strategic Alliance. The Alliance aims to contribute to multilateral medical cooperation by enhancing collaboration between international medical organizations, promoting the internationalization of the domestic pharmaceutical manufacturing industry, and seeking participation in the World Health Organization.

International Medical Centers

At these centers, bilingual personnel and signs in Chinese and English guide patients on their visit from registration to the picking up to medicines. Websites are also available, providing further information about these key institutions.