Finding a Doctor

Information on how to find a general practitioner or medical specialist, plus details on referrals and medical records...

There are many English-speaking doctors in metropolitan and tourist areas. Lists of English-speaking health professionals can be obtained from consulates or by word-of-mouth and recommendations.

In metropolitan areas, a patient is free to choose which GP to visit. However, in rural areas, a doctor is usually appointed to a district. Patients with private health insurance are generally provided with a list of doctors, hospitals and health centres that have an agreement with the insurance provider.

A Family Doctor System is currently being set up in some provinces of Turkey, although it is not yet widespread. In areas where the system is in place, patients with a social security number should register with a doctor and visit that doctor before seeking treatment in a hospital. Patients may have to pay additional charges if they have not seen their primary care provider beforehand. Patients may change family doctor after six months if they are not satisfied with their choice of doctor.

Referrals from doctors are generally required before visiting a specialist except in the case of an emergency. When making an appointment with a specialist, it is suggested that the appointment is booked at least a week in advance. In cities, an appointment can also be made via the Internet.

A prescription from a doctor is needed for an MRI scan, ultrasound and for laboratory tests.