Childbirth and health insurance for the newborn child
A woman may elect to give birth in a health institution or at home, in a municipal or private hospital. If a woman makes a prior decision to give birth at home, she bears full responsibility for her health and that of the child.
Giving birth at a municipal hospital is free of charge. In hospitals, doctors are on duty around the clock and family rooms can be used as a paid service. In the family room, the father also has the opportunity to stay with the family. In all general hospital rooms in maternity wards, the parents can remain with the children. All Estonian hospitals make it possible to give birth with a support person – a child’s father or some other family member or relative.
In case of a desire to give up a child for adoption after birth, the doctor can arrange for a meeting with a social worker. There are also ways of deferring the decision to give up a child, such as by placing the child with a foster family. To give up a child for adoption, a petition must be written renouncing parental rights. A mother who gives up her child for adoption will not have any access to information about his or her future – not even the family into which the child is placed or events in his or her life.
All children have health insurance until the day they turn 19 (this day included). It is important to mark down the child’s place of residence in the population register, as health insurance enters into force for all the children permanently living in Estonia and registered in the population register. If the child’s information has not reached the database of the Health Insurance Fund after the issue of the birth certificate, you will have to turn to the customer service offices of the Health Insurance Fund or call their customer service helpline 669 6630 to receive further instructions.
An infant is automatically registered to the practice of their mother’s family physician. In the first month of a newborn’s life, the family doctor or nurse can visit a home as well to check on the child’s health.
Immunization or vaccination is voluntary. The parents of the child in the kindergarten and the parents of the student must be notified in writing regarding immunization at least one week before the planned immunization and the immunization is permitted with the written consent of the parent.
If you have any questions, call the client line of the Health Insurance Fund at (+372) 669 6630 or write an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.