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Known as the pearl of the Baltic states, Latvia offers a remarkable array of medical treatments and experiences that will make your time spent here truly unforgettable. International patients coming to Latvia will not only have the opportunity to receive high-quality medical services but also experience unique wellness treatments, enjoy the stunning nature and discover a rich historical and cultural heritage.
Situated in the centre of the Baltic states, on the shores of the Baltic Sea, Latvia is known as the pearl of the Baltic states. Latvia is a true place of inspiration and magnificent diversity from a variety of natural landscapes, medieval castles, ancient local traditions to modern cities and progressive cosmopolitan culture.
Since ancient times Latvia has been at the crossroads, between East and West, North and South. Therefore it’s a multi-cultured country, where diverse traditions have merged together, creating a unique environment, combining European forward-thinking approach and Latvian traditions. Since regaining its independence after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, Latvia has undergone rapid economic modernisation and became a proud member of the EU and NATO.
Latvia has long been an attractive destination for tourists seeking medical care and wellness treatments. The country offers the latest technologies, most advanced facilities and medical procedures acclaimed within international medical community. Medical tourists are attracted by the high efficiency of operations and complex procedures, fast access to services and significant cost savings. Comparing to Western countries, in Latvia patients can make a cost saving of up to 70%.
There are over 150 healthcare institutions in Riga, the capital of Latvia, providing a full range of medical treatments, diagnostics and all types of surgery. Interdisciplinary collaboration between multiple specialists is a common practice in Latvia allowing doctors to perform comprehensive treatments in order to deliver better patient outcomes.
Latvia has a rich array of natural healing resources including healing mud, sauna and mineral water springs that provide unique wellness treatments. Latvia is one of the greenest places in Europe with forests and natural ecosystem, covering more than half a country. The coastline of the Baltic sea in Latvia is almost 500 km long covered with white sand, pine dunes and fresh sea breeze. From sandy beach, natural lakes and rivers, Latvia is a an excellent spot for eco tourism, offering a number of sport activities, unique treatments and a serene setting to encourage quick recovery.
Latvia has a rich history, unique culture and well-established traditions. Riga, the capital of Latvia, is dating back to medieval times and is full of historic treasures from the Old Town designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and old Gothic churches, wooden and medieval buildings to exquisite Art Nouvea architecture. Riga is also home to Europe's biggest food market making it gastronomic paradise for all travellers.
2.9 million inhabitants
2 hours ahead of GMT/UK time
1-5 hours from anywhere in Europe
Riga International Airport, transfer
time to Riga is just 15 minutes
Latvian is a national language but English and Russian is fluently spoken in many medical institutions
EU, Nato, Schengen Zone,
Latvia has four distinct seasons, semi-continental climate, with very cold winters and mild, moderately rainy summers
The standard of healthcare in Latvia is to the highest level offered by the world’s leading clinics, providing state-of-the-art treatments and continually introducing high-tech innovative technologies acclaimed within international medical community. Hospitals are subject to regular inspections for compliance with strict European standards.
Medical tourism in Latvia
Latvia has been a popular destination for medical tourism since the 18th century. Latvia has a rich array of natural healing resources including healing mud and mineral water springs, which have been used in medical treatment and preventive healthcare for many centuries. Unique natural resources gave rise to the emergence of wellness and medical tourism in Latvia, attracting millions of tourists from all over the world.
Health tourism is a growing industry in Latvia, with great export potential. After gaining independence from the Soviet Union in 1991, Latvia has undergone healthcare reforms and rapidly introduced the world’s latest technologies and methods, innovative medical products and services. The high professionalism of doctors and the availability of world-class medical technologies at a significantly lower price than in other European countries is what makes Latvia an attractive destination for health tourists. In general, medical tourists can make a cost saving of about 50-70%. There is a transparent pricing policy with no hidden premiums. On average, medical services in Latvia are 5 to 10 times cheaper than in US, and 2 to 3 times lower than in Western Europe: Germany, Norway and the United Kingdom. The cost of travel and stay is also very competitive. In fact, generally the cost of travel, medical treatments and your stay is lower than a medical treatment on it's own in other European countries.
Riga, the capital of Latvia, is a central hub for medical tourism in Latvia. There are over 150 healthcare institutions providing a full range of medical treatments, diagnostics and all types of surgery. Additional benefit is the compact size of Riga, most destinations in the city can be reached in under 20 minutes allowing patients to embrace a comprehensive medical itinerary and discover so much more. You can have a medical check-up, dentist appointment, a specialist consultation or a treatment, beauty therapy and wellness treatments - and all that is possible in just one day! You can also be at the beach in half an hour, or deep in the fresh nature, in even less time. International patients coming to Latvia will not only have the opportunity to receive high-quality medical treatments but also, discover the romance of Riga’s medieval ages – merchants and craftsmen town, founded more than 800 years ago.
One of the most popular resorts located on the shores of the Riga seaside is Jurmala, which in 1838 was officially recognised as a balneological resort and the city received the status of a state resort of the Russian Empire. Jurmala is well-known for its natural treasures - the mild climate, sea, healthy air, curative mud and mineral water. Jurmala is a popular weekend escape with its wooden guesthouses, art nouveau villas and spa hotels. Jump on a train from Riga's central station and you can reach the beach in around 20 minutes. The main attraction of Jurmala hides in its almost 33 km long white sandy beach and the large pine forests. In Jurmala , you can find a large number of SPA-hotels and sanatoriums offering a wide range of wellness, medical, beauty and local authentic treatments.
Healthcare system in Latvia
There are two types of health insurance in Latvia: public healthcare and private insurance. Latvia has an NHS-type healthcare system with a purchaser-provider split, characterised by tax-financed statutory health care provision and a combination of public and private health providers. State insurance is accesible for children, students, adults whose social taxes are paid by their employer, pregnant women, unemployed persons, dependent spouses, and pensioners. The state fund covers most of the costs for eligible treatments, and patients only need to co-pay a small fraction of the cost. To receive state health insurance, you have to be registered with a local GP and have an ID card, which you get when you register as a resident. For a specialist care, in most cases patients require a GP referral.
Private healthcare in Latvia is growing and is often offered by Latvian employers. In private clinics you will find more multi-lingual personal who can fluently communicate in English and Russian. Both public and private healthcare sectors provide medical procedures of excellent quality, modern medical facilities and are equipped with the cutting edge diagnostics technology. The latest technology makes it possible to perform less invasive manipulations, which means a short recovery period and reduces the risk of complications.
Latvian specialists are highly skilled and experienced in working with international patients, can communicate fluently in several foreign languages. Medical students have to study for ten years before becoming a fully qualified doctor, six years to receive Medical Degree and additional four years to become a specialist in their particular field of medicine. Most doctors undertake internship in Western Europe and the US through a professional exchange program and continuously supplement their qualifications with the latest trainings. All doctors are required to undergo "recertification" every five years.
Interdisciplinary collaboration between multiple specialists is a common practice in Latvia and the close cooperation between specialists from different fields ensures that treatment solutions are more efficient and can deliver better patient outcomes. Great value is placed on establishing a direct and caring doctor-patient relationship.
Can European Union citizens use EHIC in Latvia?
Latvia is a member of the European Union and thus European citizens are entitled to receive medical treatments that become necessary in Latvia, provided they hold a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) and their passport. However, the EHIC only covers public healthcare so you should ensure that you’re treated by a state healthcare provider.
Where do medical tourists come from?
There are over ten thousands of medical tourists coming to Latvia each year to improve their health from all parts of the world: United Kingdom, Germany, Russia, Sweden, Finland, Canada, Israel, India, Italy, Kazakhstan, Belarus, and other countries. The number of foreign patients coming to Latvia to receive medical services is growing rapidly.
Most popular healthcare services
The most popular healthcare services consumed by medical tourists in Latvia are:
• Plastic surgery
• General medicine
Compare prices of medical procedures across the world
Compare prices for medical procedures in Latvia with other destination. It's worth noting that these prices are the starting prices and are not fixed or guaranteed. Prices may change from patient to patient, depending on a variety of different factors. Please get in touch for a personalised treatment quote.
All prices quoted in 2022, GBP
EU Directive on Cross Border Healthcare
EU Directive gives all EU patients the right to receive planned, emergency and unplanned healthcare services in Latvia and apply for reimbursement from the NHS. For more information please check https://www.nhs.uk/using-the-nhs/healthcare-abroad/going-abroad-for-treatment/what-is-the-eu-directive-route/
Health & Safety
You should take comprehensive medical insurance to cover you during your stay. If you are from the EU, it is recommended to get a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). Though it’s not a substitute for travel insurance, it entitles you to emergency medical treatment on the same terms as Latvian nationals. It won’t, however, cover you for medical repatriation, ongoing medical treatment or non-urgent treatment.
Latvia is a member of the EU and Schengen zone. EU citizens don’t need a visa. U.S. citizens may enter Latvia for up to 90 days. Russian visitors will need to apply for a Schengen visa.
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