Dental Care in the Netherlands

In the Netherlands, dental care is provided by qualified dentists, all of whom are government-registered. The quality of care provided, compared to other countries, in general, is excellent.

Types of dental practices in the Netherlands
Almost all dental practices in the Netherlands are private, there are no state practices. Most of them are modest undertakings comprising one dentist (“tandarts” in Dutch) and an assistant. Practices are usually larger in major cities and include several dentists, assistants, and dental hygienists — allowing the practice to diversify its services. Most Dutch practices are full and it can sometimes be difficult to find one able to take on new patients.

Dutch dental care rates
The government, through De Nederlandse Zorgautoriteit (NZa), regulates the rates for services rendered, which makes these rates, generally speaking, lower than in most wealthy countries. Anything a dentist might carry out is described in uniform codes that allow the insurance company to determine the related costs. All dentists working in the Netherlands must adhere to these codes.
Technical costs between dental care providers, however, can vary and could significantly affect patients’ decision to opt for a particular practice. Dentists are obliged to list their prices on their websites to allow clients to choose a dentist that balances the prices they can afford with the quality they seek. As a guide, yearly dental check-ups in the Netherlands usually cost between 20 en 45 euro.

Is dental care covered by Dutch state insurance?
Dentistry is mostly privatized in the Netherlands, meaning that you are responsible for paying for the related costs and not your insurance company. If you are covered by a Dutch basic health insurance policy (“basisverzekering”), your insurance company will bear the costs of all dentistry for your children up to the age of 18 as well as dental surgery for all adults.

Private dental insurance
All other dental care, which makes up the majority of the care you receive, can only be insured by taking out an additional healthcare insurance. This supplementary insurance can cover up to 100% of the cost. For the exact coverage, check the policy terms or contact your insurer. Insurers are obliged to list on their websites up to how much they reimburse for various consultations and procedures. This helps the public calculate how much they will receive back for treatments, which will vary considerably per dentist, and may even stimulate them to change between dental practices. Several large international health insurance companies provide dental coverage tailored to meet the needs of ex-pats in the Netherlands.