top cx logo
cx logo
Explorearrow down
search icon

Macron's 2020 vision includes free glasses

President unveils plan for fully reimbursed spectacles in two years

Certain spectacles will be fully reimbursed from 2020 under plans unveiled by President Emmanuel Macron during a speech on social security reform.

Free glasses were an election promise of Mr Macron, along with dental prostheses and hearing aids - which will be reimbursed from 2021.

Under the plan, opticians must offer at least 17 models of glasses including quality lenses, such as unbreakable lenses, thin lenses, anti-reflective lenses and frames of different colours. The spectacles covered must also be available to patients with all vision problems.

The scheme is intended to open healthcare to the poorest in society. As Health Minister Agnès Buzyn said well in advance of Mr Macron's announcement, there was no chance of, "offering Chanel frames to everyone".

All adults will be covered for one pair of spectacles every two years, while children will be entitled to a free pair every year, Mr Macron said at the 42nd congrès de la Mutualité française in Montpellier, describing the changes as "an essential social conquest".

"Our system treats well but prevents badly," he said. "Having a system that prevents better is both better in terms of collective health and the effectiveness of our system."

Current reimbursement rates for such items are very low – for glasses, it is just 60% of €2.84 for frames and 60% of €2.29 for basic lenses, while costs can be more than 100 times that. Ms Buzyn said the government was in talks with the three sectors on cutting costs and aimed to have developed plans by June. Dentistry would be the first to be covered as it had the simplest system.

According to Le Parisien, opticians will also have a list of 12 capped prices for single lenses, variable according to corrections, and 12 prices for progressive lenses.

Stay informed:
Sign up to our free weekly e-newsletter
Subscribe to access all our online articles and receive our printed monthly newspaper The Connexion at your home. News analysis, features and practical help for English-speakers in France

Resident or second-home owner in France?
Benefit from our daily digest of headlines and how-to's to help you make the most of life in France
By joining the newsletter, you agree to our Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy
See more popular articles
The Connexion Help Guides
featured helpguide
Income Tax in France 2023 (for 2022 income)*
Featured Help Guide
- Primarily aimed at Britons, covers pensions, rent, ISAs, shares, savings and interest - Overview of online declarations + step-by-step guide to the French printed forms - Includes updates given automatically after this year's site opened
Get news, views and information from France