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Insurance (researcher)

Health insurance

As a researcher, various criteria should be considered when choosing your health coverage, such as your professional activity, nationality and the length of your stay.

  • You have a French employment contract
As soon as your employment contract begins your healthcare costs will be covered by the general social security regime (Régime Général de la Sécurité Sociale). Health insurance premiums will be deducted directly from your salary.

If you plan on arriving in France before your contact begins, we recommend you take out travel insurance or private health insurance to ensure you are covered from the moment you arrive.

You will not be registered automatically.
You must fill in the "demande d'ouverture de droits" (entitlements application) or "demande d'affiliation" (registration application) form, provide all of the supporting documents requested, and then send your application to one of the following health insurance bodies: Caisse Primaire d’Assurance Maladie (CPAM) de Paris, the CPAM or the MGEN in your place of residence.
Which insurance body you choose depends on a number of criteria:

-> You have a "Passeport Talent" visa
The CPAM de Paris will be your contact for registration and all reimbursement requests:
CPAM de Paris
75948 Paris Cedex 19
Download the "demande d’ouverture de droits" form (entitlements application)

-> You do not have a "Passeport Talent" visa
Your contract will last less than 10 months: The CPAM for your place of residence will be your contact for registration and all reimbursement requests.
Download the "demande d’ouverture de droits" form (entitlements application)

Your contract will last more than 10 months: The MGEN for your place of residence will be your contact for registration and all reimbursement requests. To register, you can go directly to an agency or download the form from the MGEN website.

  • You do not have a French employment contract
European (EU/EEA) or Swiss
Before arriving in France, make sure you obtain your European Health Insurance Card (EHIC), the S1 form (if available), or the refusal to issue the S1 form from your country's national health insurance office.
These documents must be valid for your entire stay in France.
Your contact for the reimbursement of medical costs in France will be the international relations department of the CPAM (Caisse Primaire d’Assurance Maladie /Primary Health Insurance Fund) in your place of residence.

Other nationalities
People living in France on a continuous and legal basis may, after 3 months of residence in France, be eligible for "Protection Universelle Maladie" (universal health coverage) that covers their healthcare costs.
However, bear in mind that, in addition to residency criteria, international applicants are subject to other conditions to be able to benefit from this scheme:
The existence of a bilateral agreement with your country of origin: depending on the details of this agreement, you may be able to remain registered with the health insurance body in your country. Speak to your national health insurance office before arriving in France to find out what procedures you need to follow.
Type of visa: Certain visas and residence permits do not offer the possibility of registering for "Protection Universelle Maladie". Speak to your consulate or embassy when your visa is issued to find out more.

After 3 months of residence in France, to apply for "Protection Universelle Maladie", you need to download the entitlements application form (“demande d'ouverture de droits”), fill it out, attach all the supporting documents required for your circumstances, and send it to the CPAM for your place of residence. Applications take 6-10 weeks to be processed.

In all circumstances, the first few months of your stay in France should be covered by private health insurance.

If you are not eligible for "Protection Universelle Maladie" you should take out private health insurance to cover your medical costs during your stay in France.

Signing up for private health insurance in your country of origin before arriving in France
This option enables you to be covered in France as soon as you arrive and will save you time once you get here.

Signing up for private health insurance in France
If you choose this option, we recommend you take out travel insurance that ensures you are covered until you find health insurance in France.
As a researcher, you are eligible for specially negotiated offers from a partner insurance provider as part of the EURAXESS network if you register in our guest researchers database.

Taking out private health insurance is often subject to a medical questionnaire and the prices offered by insurance providers in France vary greatly. We recommend you compare offers to choose the one that best meets your needs.

Complementary health insurance or mutuelle

What is a complementary health insurance, or ‘mutuelle’ ?
The health insurance, also called social security, covers only part of your medical expenses, and the reimbursement rate varies depending on the type of treatment.
To top up social security reimbursements, it is strongly recomended to subscribe to a complementary health insurance, also called ‘mutuelle’.
Even though it is not mandatory, you will be better covered if you have one, particularly in the event of hospitalization.

Who is it for ?
To subscribe to a complementary health insurance, you need to be registered with the french national health insurance, or have a valid European Health Insurance Card or a RAMQ form (Québec students).

Where can I get a complementary health insurance ?
It is up to you to ask for quotes, and compare the offers from different ‘mutuelles’ insurance providers.

  • If you are a student, note that there are student insurance providers with competitive offers.
  • If you have a limited budget, which does not allow you to take out a complementary health insurance, you can apply for the ‘Complémentaire Santé Solidaire’ at the CPAM (more information below).
  • If you have a work contract with an institution of the French Ministry of Higher Education, Research and Innovation, note that some insurance providers have special offers.

Find out more

‘Complémentaire Santé Solidaire’
You must be registered with the french national health insurance in order to be able to apply for the ‘Complémentaire Santé Solidaire’. Several criteria will be taken into account, including your financial resources (in France and abroad) and your family situation.
The application is to be done with your local CPAM, using the form S3711 « Demande de complémentaire santé solidaire », and will need to be renewed every year.
You will know whether your application was accepted or not within two months after having submitted your complete file.
The cost, from 0€ to 30€ per month, varies depending on your financial resources and age.
If you came along with your spouse or children, you will need to submit one single application for the whole family.
More information on the French National Health Insurance website.

How much does a complementary health insurance, or ‘mutuelle’, costs ?
The cost depends on the insurance contract you chose to subscribe to.
For information purposes only, student insurance providers’ offers range from 6€ to 40€ per month. For a researcher with a work contract, offers on average range from around 40€ to more than 100€ per month depending on your family situation.

What is the amount of the reimbursements ?
Reimbursements vary depending on the contract you chose, and on the type of medical care.
For example
: A consultation with a social security-approved general practitioner

Beware, there may also be a waiting period (known as "carence"), during which time you will not be reimbursed for certain services.
You can get more information directly from your ‘mutuelle’ insurance provider.

Updated on June 23, 2020


The health insurance wants you to provide the translation of your birth certificate ?
Click here to know how to find a certified translator.


If your spouse and/or children have come to France with you, we also recommend you refer to the Family Health section of our portal.
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