There are many options available if you need to see a doctor in Malta, both during regular or after-hours. Many doctors and specialists will even provide you with their mobile numbers so you can contact them directly when you need them.
General practitioners in Malta do not keep their patient’s health records or test results. The patient is responsible for storing and transporting this information to medical appointments and visits.
Public Polyclinics/Health Centers
Patients are seen on a first come first serve basis during physician hours. Patients must present an ID card, and should also bring their health records.
For a complete list of Health Centers, see the Ministry of Health’s web site. Patients are requested to attend the Health Center that serves their locality of residence.
Service at public polyclinics/Health Centers is free of charge to Maltese and EU nationals, and non-EU nationals paying National Insurance and taxes in possession of the correct residence permit and documentation.
Patients are admitted to hospitals after referral from a General Practitioner or through the emergency department.
The emergency number in Malta is 112.
Emergency care is provided free of charge to everyone, including EU and non-EU nationals without state health insurance. However, once non-EU nationals without access to state health insurance become non-emergent, hospitals require proof of insurance status, as well as payment for non-emergent treatments.
Malta’s primary public hospital is Mater Dei, located in Msida, where specialist and emergent care is delivered. Other government hospitals in Malta include the Paul Boffa Hospital (Floriana), St Vincent de Paul, Mount Carmel Hospital, Karin Grech, and the Gozo General Hospital.
The main private clinics in Malta are St. James Hospital Group (Zabbar, Zebbug, Sliema), St. Anne’s Clinic (Birkirkara), and St. Mark’s Clinic (Msida).
Patients are seen by appointment during normal business hours. Patients must bring their own health records. Patients can make appointments with certain specialists directly.
To see a flow chart of the procedures involved in typical patient visits at a private clinic in Malta, see the St James Hospital web site.
Private clinics also offer direct billing to insurance companies in Malta, such as Atlas, Bupa, Gasan Mamo, Laferla, and Middlesea. Cash or credit card payments are also standard at private clinics.
Physicians visit local pharmacies during set hours, sometimes rotating between various pharmacies during the week. There is no need to register with a receptionist; patients are seen on a first come first serve basis and must bring their own medical records.
Physician visits at pharmacies cost €8-€15. Cash payment is standard; receipts are issued.
It is recommended to check with your local pharmacy when a physician is in attendance.
If a patient is unable to attend a clinic or pharmacy, physicians in Malta can make house calls during regular business hours, or after hours for emergencies only.
House calls cost approximately €30-€50. Cash payments are standard; receipts are issued.
Seeing a Dentist in Malta
Dental clinics in Malta are privately run. To see a dentist, contact a local dental clinic for an appointment.
Dental work in Malta is fairly inexpensive compared to the rest of Europe and North America, with routine exams and cleaning from €35, extractions from €35, and fillings starting from €45. As such, some dental clinics, such as Demajo Dental, the Regional Dental Clinic, and the Savina Clinic, market towards both locals and tourists, and publish their price lists online. Many dentists will offer oral examinations or give general advice for free. Dental clinics can also arrange accommodation for tourists seeking their services.
Dental clinics are generally clean, modern, and well-maintained, offering high quality professional services and well-trained, attentive practitioners.
Upon payment (cash or credit card), dental clinics can issue a receipt to submit for reimbursement to insurance companies.
By Jess Gerrow, who traded city life in Canada for island life in the Mediterranean two years ago. She is a postgraduate marketing student, blogger, and freelance writer.