< Back Are there any vaccinations I should get or other health precautions to take as I prepare for my move to your city? Before I get sick, what should I know about seeking medical care in your city as an expat? What is the word for "doctor" in the local language? What is the best way to locate a suitable health care provider? Do expats in the area tend to leave the city/area/country to seek medical care? If so, why and where do they go? What is the number to call to summon help in an emergency? List medical/fire/police. What do I do if there's an emergency in the middle of the night—or at another time when my normal doctor/clinic is unavailable? How will I recognize a pharmacy? What is it called in the local language? Is the water safe to drink? Are there any vaccinations I should get or other health precautions to take as I prepare for my move to your city? Vaccinations are not required. However, all travelers to New Zealand should be up to date on tetanus-diphtheria, measles-mumps-rubella, polio and varicella immunizations. It is important to bring any medical certificates and records from your home country. Check any other specific vaccination requirements carefully with your local New Zealand consulate or embassy to confirm medical requirements. ↑ Top Before I get sick, what should I know about seeking medical care in your city as an expat? New Zealand has a largely government-funded health care system and many health services are free or subsidized. However, you do have to pay for some services, such as seeing a family doctor or dentist. Individuals (and their dependent children) staying two or more years and holding work visas are eligible for publicly funded health care and disability services. Other work permit visa, students and visitor permit holders typically are not eligible. People who are not eligible must pay for the full cost of any medical treatment they receive in New Zealand. Medical staff will ask for legal verification so you must take your passport or visa with you to a medical facility to prove your eligibility. Medical services for acute illness or injury are provided in the first instance by General Practitioners (G.P.) in community medical or health centers. It is recommended that you register with the G.P. of your choice and provide a copy of your medical records from your home country. Visits to a G.P.’s office are subject to fees; please inquire when you register. Children up to the age of six years old will either be treated free of charge or incur only a partial charge, depending on the circumstances. You will receive a discount on the consultation fees by enrolling with the GP/medical center. There are private medical centers in every major city that are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. After-hours and weekend visits will incur an additional charge. Care for severe illness or injury may be provided in public hospitals. These hospitals provide a wide range of free, high-quality specialist services. Private health insurance schemes are available. To be eligible for private health insurance, you are required to hold a visa for at least 24 months. All individuals who are covered by New Zealand’s Reciprocal Health Agreements with Australia, Great Britain, Northern Ireland and several Pacific island countries, as well as persons with official refugee status and members of the Royal Navy, are entitled to publicly funded healthcare for immediately necessary medical treatment only. It is strongly recommended that you have comprehensive health insurance for the duration of your stay. ↑ Top What is the word for "doctor" in the local language? Doctor, physician, MD (medical doctor) and/or General Practitioner (G.P.). The term GP is more commonly used for doctor. ↑ Top What is the best way to locate a suitable health care provider? All medical and health facilities are listed in the front of every telephone book. A recommendation from a work colleague or friend is also advisable. It is recommended that you make an appointment with the medical center for a GP consultation, unless there is an emergency. ↑ Top Do expats in the area tend to leave the city/area/country to seek medical care? If so, why and where do they go? No, New Zealand has excellent health care facilities. ↑ Top What is the number to call to summon help in an emergency? List medical/fire/police. 111 is the number to call for all types of emergencies. ↑ Top What do I do if there's an emergency in the middle of the night—or at another time when my normal doctor/clinic is unavailable? Call 111 or go to any number of medical clinics open 24 hours and 7 days a week. For a list of medical clinics, please refer to the Yellow Pages or the front of the local telephone book. ↑ Top How will I recognize a pharmacy? What is it called in the local language? Pharmacies are more commonly known as Chemists. Chemists are located in most shopping districts; some medical centers have chemists next to them. ↑ Top Is the water safe to drink? Yes, the water in New Zealand is clean and safe for consumption. However, it is recommended that you do not drink from streams, rivers or hot pools. ↑ Top IMPORTANT NOTE: Crown Relocations has made every effort to present accurate information. However, regulations, rates and other variables are subject to change and Crown Relocations cannot accept responsibility for the errors that might result. Should you have any questions or need additional information, please contact your local Crown representative.