All asylum seekers have the right to health insurance, even if you are in the “fast-track” procedure (factsheet 2) or the “Dublin procedure” (factsheet 3). However, during the first 3 months of presence in France, asylum seekers who are 18 years and over are not eligible for health insurance; they can only receive free hospital care through the "urgent and vital care" system.
Asylum seekers who can prove that they have been in France for more than 3 months are entitled to health insurance; minor (under 18) asylum seekers and the children of an asylum seeker are entitled to health insurance without having to prove their presence in France for 3 months.
You also have the right to free complementary health insurance (universal complementary healthcare coverage or “C2S” (ex-CMU-C)) if you have a low income (less than 750 euros per month approximately for a single person).
Health insurance and the C2S complementary insurance allow you to avoid paying for healthcare, and you do not have to pay any medical fees or medication costs up front.
To obtain this right to health insurance, you must go to the health insurance office (CPAM) of your place of residence on the date indicated in the appointment letter that the Spada (factsheet 1) or the Ofii (factsheet 2) will give you. If the Spada does not give you an appointment at the CPAM, ask for it!
At your appointment, you must present:
- The asylum application certificate that the prefecture gave you when your request was registered;
- The proof of residence that your accommodation center or the Spada gave to you;
- If you are 18 or older, the proof of your presence in France for more than 3 months.
When you have obtained health insurance and C2S complementary insurance, you can go to the doctor or hospital for free. You will need only to present the Ameli paper certificate. As of July 2017, asylum seekers can no longer be issued a “carte Vitale” (green healthcare card).
If you need help with these administrative procedures, you can contact:
- the social services department of the hospital;
- the association which is helping you to prepare your asylum request file;
- the center which is housing you.
While waiting to obtain health insurance, you can go to the departments for access to healthcare (permanences d’accès aux soins de santé : PASS) which are present in some hospitals. A social worker will assess your social situation and help you find a doctor.
In Paris, you may also contact:
- the Reception and orientation center (Caso), run by Médecins du Monde, 8-10 rue des blés 93210 La plaine Saint Denis (metro Front populaire, line 12)
- or the Reception, orientation and accompaniment center (CAOA), 15 boulevard de Picpus 75012 Paris (métro Bel-Air on line 6).
The opening hours of these centers are available on : www.medecinsdumonde.org/fr/contact/ile-de-france
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