In terms of state subsidies, dental and ophthalmic care cover can vary drastically from one country to the next. Andorra is heralded not only for having one of the highest quality healthcare systems in the world, but for also operating a fair, universal and subsidised health structure. The social security system (CASS), which has been in place since the 1960’s (as an improvement on the healthcare system that had already been in place since 1918), reimburses a generous portion of medical fees. Many medical fees, consultation costs, examinations, pharmaceutical expenses, and hospital visits are typically 75% to 90% covered. In some circumstances, such as workplace injuries or giving birth, the costs are often 100% covered by the state.Andorra, being a microstate, only has one hospital (Nostra Senyora de Meritxell), but it is considered world-class. It is a modern facility, equipped with state-of-the-art medical equipment and highly trained staff, including specialists who have completed their medical training abroad. Andorra also has numerous specialised private practices and public health centres, which can be found throughout the country. These cover general health and wellbeing, dentistry, ophthalmic care, cosmetic procedures and more.
When it comes to dental or ophthalmic treatment in Andorra, it’s best to familiarise yourself with how things work and your options, so that you can choose the best option for you.
Dental care in Andorra
While Andorra tends to offer a far greater subsidy for dental treatments than many other countries, it still only covers certain treatments and costs. Typically, only routine visits and checkups are covered by the state healthcare system. In such cases, you would see a dentist who has signed an agreement with CASS. If you are unsure where to go for this, you can visit your local health centre.
For more extensive treatments, such as crowns, bridges, root canals or implants, you will likely have to pay the costs out of pocket, unless you have private or supplementary health insurance. You will most likely need to get this done at a private dental clinic, but it can be done by any dentist, regardless of whether they are CASS registered or not, as the costs will not be covered by the state anyway.
Private dental practices in Andorra
Andorra has a great network of doctors and medical specialists, who run private practices throughout the country. These private practices specialise in plenty of different fields, including dentistry and ophthalmology. Various languages are spoken in order to cater to patient needs. The official language of the country is Catalan, but English, French and Spanish (and sometimes Portuguese) are also commonly spoken. See below for a list of highly rated dental clinics in Andorra:
Alfadent Clínica Dental
Address: 1a planta, AD500 Andorra la Vella, Andorra
Clínica Dental Espai Buca
Address: Carrer de na Maria Pla, 33, AD500 Andorra la Vella, Andorra
Address: Carrer de la Unió, 15, AD500 Andorra la Vella, Andorra
Clinica Odontologica Cerqueda Andorra
Address: Carrer Prat de la Creu, 22, AD500 Andorra la Vella, Andorra
Clínica Dental Odontoma
Address: 13. Edif. Montnegre, Local, 1, AD500 Andorra la Vella, Andorra
Clínica Dental Llabería
Address: Avda. Bonaventura Armengol nº10, Ed. Montclar, bloc 1, planta 4, local, 2, AD500 Andorra la Vella, Andorra
Ophthalmic care in Andorra
Ophthalmic care encompasses conditions and treatments relating to the eye. This can include anything from blurred vision and cataracts to diabetic retinopathy and macular degeneration. Some of the ophthalmic practitioners in Andorra are very well established. The VallmedicVision ophthalmological centre, for example, has some of the most advanced technology in Europe. They specialise in laser correction of refraction disorders such as astigmatism and short- or long-sightedness. The optician’s chain ‘Cottet’ was first founded over a century ago in Barcelona. Routine eye-check ups are typically reimbursed by the state. Cosmetic procedures, such as laser eye surgery, will have to be paid for privately at your own expense.
If you’re looking for a regular quick check-up, eye-test, or a pair of prescription glasses, there are a number of opticians you can visit, including:
Cottet Óptica y Audiología
Address: Av. Meritxell, 81, AD500 Andorra la Vella, Andorra
Dry Eye Clinic
Address: Av.Nacions Unides, 17PB, AD700 Escaldes-Engordany, Andorra
Clínica Dorsia Cirugía y Medicina Estética
Address: Carrer Prat de la Creu, 80, AD500 Andorra la Vella, Andorra
Òptica Visual Andorrana
Address: Av. Carlemany, 73, AD700 Escaldes-Engordany, Andorra
The likes of VallmedicVision (address: Av. de les Nacions Unides, AD700 Escaldes-Engordany, Andorra) are more specialised, particularly in the area of cosmetic procedures and enhancements. They also have facilities where you can receive your medical procedures and stay overnight, or for a weekend, to recover, so the care package is much more comprehensive.
Healthcare integration and insurance
Due to the small size of the Andorran population, there are various medical specialties that may not be available within the country. For that reason, CASS established social security agreements with neighbouring countries France and Spain. This integrated approach means that Andorrans are still able to get a portion of their medical costs reimbursed, if they need to seek treatment in either Spain or France.
Since not all costs relating to dental and ophthalmic treatments are covered by the state, it is generally wise to purchase either a supplementary health policy to top up your state cover, or a private medical insurance policy that offers comprehensive cover. You must always check what the specific dental and/or ophthalmic cover includes on the policy you wish to purchase, as it may be a relatively small amount with some policy providers. The European health insurance card (EHIC), which covers the costs of medical care in many European states, is not considered valid for use in Andorra.