Although the French healthcare system is very generous, it doesn’t cover everything. Visits to specialists, attractive glasses and long hospital stays are not always 100% taken care of. This is where the mutuelle comes in. A good mutuelle can fill in what is left out by the healthcare system. You pay a little every month, but its a great healthcare investment.
Mutuelles Through Work
If you’re working full time on a CDD or CDI contract, you can benefit from an employee mutuelle. Talk to your human ressources department for information on their mutuelle plan. It’s usually pretty simple to get signed up, and you can begin benefitting right away.
When you’re a student in France, you choose your own healthcare coverage. Students can either be covered by their parents mutuelles or they choose one especially for themselves. The two principal mutuelle providers for students are the SMEREP and LMDE. Both providers have plans giving varying degrees of coverage. They also each have sections on their websites for foreign students. Click the links for the SMEREP’s foreign student section or the LMDE’s foreign student section. The SMEREP also has a special offer for foreign students (although at first blush this appears a little expensive).
Getting an Independent Mutuelle
If you’re not satisfied with options with the mutuelle at your work, or you are not eligble for one (say, you’re an auto-entrepreneur) then you can pay into a mutuelle yourself. The best way to see what your needs are is to go to a price comparison site to see what the best plan would be best for you.
Benefitting from a Spouse’s Mutuelle
If you’re married and your spouse has a mutuelle you can benefit from it. Get your spouse to add your name to his account.