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Free health check-up for 45-50 year olds in France: how will it work?

This will be the first age group to benefit from this new preventative initiative

The health scheme is set to roll out free check-ups to different age groups Pic: Ground Picture / Shutterstock

People aged 45-50 in France will be able to benefit from a free health check-up, if they so wish, in a new initiative introduced by Assurance Maladie. 

The scheme will launch from October 1 this year, and will be rolled out to other age groups in 2024. 

It comes as part of Emmanuel Macron’s policy promises made when he was campaigning to extend his tenure as president in 2022. 

Later the scheme will offer a free health check-up to people in three ‘key’ periods of their lives; 20-25; 45-50 and 60-65.

The first group to benefit will be those aged 45-50 as announced in July by the then minister for health, François Braun. 

For this age group, the check-ups will aim to take stock of the general health of the patient and to identify and prevent the appearance of risk factors or illnesses.

They will centre around the necessity of screenings for breast, colon and prostate cancers, as well as taking a look at patients’ physical activity and any potential mental health problems. 

Read also: What is France’s ‘franchise médicale’ fee and why might it go up soon?

For 20-25 year olds, the health check-up will look at vaccinations, physical health, potential addictions and problems linked to the start of professional life. 

Finally, for those aged 60-65, the check-up will focus on the prevention of the loss of autonomy and screenings for cancers and other illnesses which can be identified early.

How will the system work?

From October 1, people aged 45-50 will be informed that availability is open to book an appointment (whether this will be by letter / text or email has not been announced). You can also contact your local health body (Cpam) to book an appointment.

People who are vulnerable or high risk will be given priority for appointments. 

Patients will be asked to fill out a questionnaire prior to the appointment which will be checked by a doctor as well as a pharmacist, nurse or midwife. 

The questionnaire will cover subjects such as food, physical activity, potential addictions, mental health and the personal environment. 

The payments for the appointments will be handled by Assurance Maladie and payment up front will not be required by the patient. 

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