Healthcare in Cyprus

Each country's health system is different and might not include all the things you would expect to get free of charge from the NHS. This means you may have to make a patient contribution to the cost of your care.

Your European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) will enable you to access public healthcare provided in Cyprus at a reduced cost, or sometimes for free.

It will cover you for treatment until you return to the UK. It also covers you for treatment of pre-existing medical conditions and for routine maternity care, provided the reason for your visit is not specifically to give birth.

Note: You may be asked to present your passport or another travel document as proof of identity.

Neither your EHIC nor S1 form (a certificate of entitlement) is valid in the parts of the Republic of Cyprus where the government of the republic does not exercise effective control (the northern part of Cyprus). You are strongly advised to take out private health insurance before travelling to this part of the country.

Finding help in an emergency

If you find yourself in a serious or life-threatening emergency or you need an ambulance, the police or the fire brigade, dial 112. Calls are free of charge from any phone, including mobile phones. Operators in Cyprus speak English. If you do not know your location, they are able to geo-locate you.

Other important numbers to note down:

  • 1441 – air/sea rescue
  • 1401 – drugs, narcotics and poison emergencies
  • 1400 – hospital information
  • 90 90 1432 – on-call doctors

Useful emergency words:

  • help – voithia
  • look out – prosekse
  • ambulance – asthenoforo
  • doctor – yiatros
  • police – astinomia
  • fire – fotia
  • firemen – pyrosvestes
  • do you speak English? – milate anglika?

Health services and costs

Your EHIC does not cover private treatment. Ensure you are treated by a state healthcare provider. You should be particularly careful if healthcare arrangements are made by a hotel or travel representative. Any costs incurred for private healthcare are non-refundable.

Tip: Remember to keep all receipts and any paperwork (make copies if necessary) as they might be needed by you or your insurance company to apply for any refund or reimbursement.

If you move to Cyprus long-term or plan to work in the country, you'll have to apply for a residence permit (yellow slip) through the local immigration office of the Ministry of Interior Republic of Cyprus using form MEU1A.

Once you are registered and you are eligible then you can apply for your Cypriot medical card (PDF, 568kb).

Since 2013, small charges have been introduced for treatment for the majority of Cypriot citizens and permanent residents. Charges include €3 for a visit to a general practitioner, €6 for a visit to a specialist, and €0.50 for each prescribed medication.

For those who do not hold a medical card, some charges will be higher: €15 for a visit to a general practitioner and €30 for a visit to a specialist. There is also a fee of €10 for emergency treatment in an accident and emergency unit, although this does not apply to pensioners. Under EU law, this exemption also applies to those receiving a pension from other EU or EEA countries.

For more details about the changes, visit the Cypriot Ministry of Health website.

Hospital treatment

Just like in the UK, you'll need to be referred by a doctor for any non-emergency hospital treatment. When you're admitted to hospital, you'll need to present either a valid EHIC or your Cypriot medical card to receive treatment at the same costs as a resident.

The Ministry of Health provides a list of public hospitals, including phone numbers.


Typically, pharmacies in Cyprus open from 9am until noon, close for a few hours and reopen from 3pm to 6pm or 7pm. Some may not open at all in the middle of the week.

View the list of 24-hour pharmacies according to region:

  • Ammochostos – telephone 90 90 1413
  • Larnaca – telephone 90 90 1414
  • Limassol – telephone 90 90 1415
  • Nicosia – telephone 90 90 1412
  • Paphos – telephone 90 90 1416

Bringing your own medicines to Cyprus

If you have a condition that requires you to bring your own medicines to Cyprus, you should have a letter from your GP stating what the medicines are and why you need them. If possible, have the letter translated into Greek (or Turkish for northern Cyprus), as this will also be useful in case you need to see a health professional during your stay.

If any of your medicines fall into the controlled drugs category, you need to comply with regulations on drugs exports in the UK.

Foreign prescriptions are not officially recognised in Cyprus and some pharmacists may refuse to accept them, although it is possible that some will. In cases where prescriptions are not accepted, book an appointment with a local doctor.

Making healthcare arrangements in advance

You'll have to arrange and pre-book medical treatment before you go abroad. You should always consult your GP or hospital before travelling. Also ensure you are not booked with a private healthcare provider, as this is not covered by the EHIC.


You should speak to the co-ordinator in your UK dialysis unit before you travel. They will contact the dialysis unit in Cyprus nearest to where you will be staying. The provision of dialysis will be subject to availability in Cyprus. The Renal Association website has a list of renal units in the UK.

Ensure you make your arrangements according to your UK schedule. There also may be different guidance depending on what type of dialysis you receive. Make sure you speak to your doctor before you travel. In addition, visit the National Kidney Federation website, which offers general advice about travelling with a kidney disease, as well as specific guidance for haemodialysis patients, peritoneal dialysis patients and guidelines for transplant patients.

Any other specialist treatment

If you need to receive any other specialist treatment, such as chemotherapy or other prescriptions, again it may be advisable to make arrangements for this in advance of your trip. Certain parts of Cyprus receive a large number of long-term visitors each year, which can mean a high demand for certain services. Although you are not obliged to make arrangements for treatment in advance of your trip, not doing so may result in delays when you need to access treatment.

Find out more about travelling with other health conditions:

Living in Cyprus

If you move to Cyprus long term or plan to work in the country, you'll have to apply for a residence permit (yellow slip) through the local immigration office of the Ministry of Interior Republic of Cyprus using form MEU1A.

Once you are registered, you'll need to check with Cypriot authorities whether you are entitled to state run healthcare.

Working in Cyprus

If you are a worker posted by a UK company to Cyprus, you may be entitled to health cover funded by the UK in Cyprus. Contact HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) for more details:

National Insurance Contributions and Employer Office
HM Revenue and Customs
United Kingdom

  • Telephone: 0300 200 3506
  • Outside UK: +44 191 203 7010
  • Opening times: 8.30am to 5pm, Monday to Friday – closed weekends and bank holidays

For more information, visit the moving abroad section.

Studying in Cyprus

If you are coming to study or are currently studying in Cyprus as part of a UK-recognised course, you may be entitled to healthcare paid for by the UK government. Also read:


If you live in Cyprus and you receive an exportable UK Pension, contribution-based Employment Support Allowance or another exportable benefit, you may be entitled to state healthcare paid for by the UK. You will need to apply for a certificate of entitlement known as an S1 form.

For exportable UK pensions and contribution-based Employment Support Allowance, you can apply for your form via the International Pension Centre at the Department for Work and Pensions on 0191 218 7777.

You may need to liaise with a different team, depending on the exportable benefit. Further information is available under claiming benefits if you live, move or travel abroad on the GOV.UK website. Please note that different exportable benefits can have different rules in terms of healthcare cover.

Once issued, register the S1 form with the relevant authority in Cyprus. Often you need to do this before you can register for healthcare or obtain a medical card.

Once you have registered your S1 in Cyprus, you will be entitled to apply for and use a UK-issued EHIC to access state-funded necessary medical treatment when you visit other EEA countries.

Tip: The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) provides useful information for Britons living in Cyprus.

Page last reviewed: 04/10/2016
Next review due: 04/10/2019