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Healthcare in Lithuania

Each country's health system is different and might not include all the things you'd 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.

Visitors to Lithuania

Finding help in an emergency

If you find yourself in a serious, life-threatening emergency, you should call 112. This number is free of charge and is also for the police and fire brigade.

Emergency healthcare services are free of charge to anyone in urgent need of medical attention. Those with insurance will be able to access additional services, while those without will receive a basic level of care only in emergencies.

Be aware that if you ask a hotel or travel representative to call a doctor, you may be treated privately. If you wish to be treated under the state system you must call 112 and ask for an ambulance to take you to the nearest state hospital.

Healthcare up until the UK leaves the EU

The government always advises UK citizens to take out travel insurance when going overseas, both to EU and non-EU destinations.

Emergency medical care is provided to anyone requiring urgent attention. You can expect to be charged in full for any care provided without an European Health Insurance Card (EHIC).

You should always buy enough travel insurance and make sure you have access to funding to cover any medical treatment abroad.

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.

Currently, your EHIC enables you to access the necessary state-provided healthcare in Lithuania at a reduced cost, or sometimes for free if you are staying there temporarily.

If you are asked to pay for health services upfront, it is likely that you are not being treated under the state health system.

EHIC does not cover certain costs, including:

  • private treatment
  • being brought back to the UK
  • mountain rescue services
  • cruises

Be careful if healthcare arrangements are made by a hotel or travel representative. They might reassure visitors that they can claim back whatever is paid out, but they are referring to private insurance and not the treatment given under the EHIC.

People with pre-existing health conditions

If you have a pre-existing health condition, you should buy medical travel insurance before visiting Lithuania. You must tell the insurance company about any pre-existing health conditions you have to make sure you can get the cover you need. If you have an EHIC, this will be valid until the UK leaves the EU but may not work after that.

If you have a pre-existing condition that will need treatment while abroad, ask your doctor in the UK for advice before you travel. Make sure you take with you any documents about your health condition or medication.

If you are travelling for the express purpose of obtaining medical treatment, see our section about seeking medical treatment in Europe.

Hospitals

All non-emergency state healthcare services are available to everyone and are funded by Compulsory Health Insurance (Privalomasis Sveikatos Draudimas – PSD) contributions. If you don't contribute to PSD you should take out private healthcare insurance.

In general, just like in the UK, you need to be referred by a doctor for any hospital treatment. However, if you have private healthcare insurance you do not need a referral from a GP to see a specialist, but you cannot receive a refund for care.

Make sure you are referred to a state hospital as only these provide treatment free of charge. Even in a state hospital you will need a valid EHIC. Double check you are not treated as a private patient.

Prescriptions

Prescriptions are given by both GPs and specialists and can even be subsidised to reduce their cost.

Prescriptions can be subsidised up to 100% of the base cost of the drug (for which the pharmacy bought it) meaning you only need to pay the difference between the sale price and the base price.

Your doctor will determine how much of the price compensation you are eligible for.

When using your EHIC, people of working age are charged 50% and pensioners are charged about 10%. Pensioners will have to declare they receive a UK State Pension in order to pay the lower rate.

Bringing your own medicines to Lithuania

Some prescribed medicines contain drugs that are controlled under the Misuse of Drugs legislation in the UK. This means that extra legal controls apply to these medicines.

You may need a personal licence to take controlled medicines abroad.

Specific requirements also apply to:

  • the information that you must take with you
  • how you carry your controlled medicines

Visit the GOV.UK website for more information on travelling with controlled medicines.

After the UK leaves the EU

If the UK leaves the EU without a deal, your access to healthcare when visiting Lithuania is likely to change. If you are planning to visit Lithuania after the UK leaves the EU, you should continue to buy travel insurance so you can get the healthcare treatment you need, just as you would if visiting a non-EU country. If you are using an EHIC issued by the UK, this will still be valid until the UK leaves the EU.

Consult your travel medical insurer to find out their terms on accessing non-emergency healthcare when visiting Lithuania.

The UK government is seeking agreements with countries, including Lithuania, on healthcare arrangements for UK nationals after the UK leaves the EU.

This guide will be updated with further information on travelling to Lithuania as the circumstances change.

Working in Lithuania

Healthcare up until the UK leaves the EU

EHIC does not cover residency of over 90 days in Lithuania, therefore UK nationals living and/or working in Lithuania must follow the registration process in order to access the same entitlements to healthcare as Lithuanian nationals.

All non-emergency state healthcare services are available to everyone and are funded by Compulsory Health Insurance (Privalomasis Sveikatos Draudimas – PSD) contributions.

Your contribution to PSD depends on your residency status, citizenship and insurance.

If you are a permanent resident of Lithuania, you must contribute to the statutory healthcare system PSD.

If you have a Lithuanian temporary residency permit you have the choice of whether you want to opt into the PSD.

Not all state healthcare services can be recharged back to PSD. The following services can be recharged:

  • if you are sent by the GP to the specialist/practice
  • if the practice has a contract with the Territorial Health Insurance Fund (Teritorine Ligoniu Kasa) (THIF) and
  • if the procedure is covered by state insurance

If you don't contribute to PSD you should take out private healthcare insurance.

If you are a worker posted by a UK company to Lithuania, you may be entitled to health cover funded by the UK in the country you are posted to.

Contact HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) for more details:

National Insurance Contributions and Employer Office
HM Revenue and Customs
BX9 1AN
United Kingdom

  • Telephone: 0300 200 3500
  • Outside UK: 0191 203 7010

Opening times: 8.30am to 5pm, Monday to Friday (closed weekends and bank holidays).

For more information, read the Moving abroad section of this website.

After the UK leaves the EU

If you are a UK posted worker, you may need to buy additional healthcare insurance in Lithuania so you can receive the healthcare treatment you need.

Funding of the Lithuanian healthcare system consists of mandatory health insurance (Privalomasis Sveikatos Draudimas – PSD) contributions and taxes. PSD contributions are mandatory for all permanent residents and Lithuanian citizens. Those holding temporary residency permits may also opt into PSD. Payments are €336 annually, unless covered by the employer and/or subsidised by the government.

If you wish to reside in Lithuania, you must obtain a Lithuanian national visa or a temporary residency permit:

  • a national visa only guarantees a stay of up to a year
  • a temporary residency permit allows for longer stays

To qualify for a national visa, you must:

  • be a student
  • be visiting Lithuania for work or work-related matters
  • have other valid reasons pertaining to a permanent stay in Lithuania

To qualify for permanent residency, without Lithuanian ancestry, you must satisfy one of the following:

  • you live with a family member who is a Lithuanian citizen (or of Lithuanian descent)
  • you have lived continuously in Lithuania for at least 5 years with a temporary residency permit
  • if you have a highly qualified job and have lived continuously in Lithuania for 2 years (with a temporary residency permit) out of the last 5 years of residing in EU countries

To obtain permanent residency you must also prove proficiency in the Lithuanian language and complete foundations exams.

Pensioners in Lithuania

Healthcare up until the UK leaves the EU

If you live in Lithuania and 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 certificate.

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.

S1 certificate (formerly known as E106)

An S1 certificate helps you and your dependants access healthcare in Lithuania. If you have an S1 certificate, it will be valid until the UK leaves the EU.

After this date, the certificate may not be valid, depending on decisions by member states.

You should continue to apply for an S1 certificate until the UK leaves the EU.

You may be eligible for an S1 certificate, if you:

  • have worked and paid contributions in the UK
  • receive some UK benefits such as pensions

Apply through the Business Services Authority for an S1 certificate.

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

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.

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) provides information about what UK and Lithuanian benefits are available to Britons living in Lithuania and information on driving regulations in Lithuania.

After the UK leaves the EU

As above, if you wish to reside in Lithuania, you must obtain a Lithuanian national visa or a temporary residency permit.

Students in Lithuania

If you are a UK resident and studying in Lithuania, and you have an EHIC, this will be valid until the UK leaves the EU.

You should continue to buy insurance to cover your healthcare, as you would if you were visiting a non-EU country after the UK leaves the EU.

For longer stays a national visa or a temporary residency permit is required. A national visa only guarantees a stay of up to a year. For a longer period of stay a temporary residency permit must be acquired or the visa be renewed. Visit the Lithuanian migration department for more information.

To qualify for a national visa, the applicant must:

  • be a student
  • be visiting Lithuania for work or work-related matters
  • have other valid reasons pertaining to a permanent stay in Lithuania

Page last reviewed: 28 January 2019
Next review due: 28 January 2022