To call an ambulance dial 144
Emergency health services are available for all in need. The public authorities will cover the costs for persons without health insurance.
Once you have been assigned to a Canton you will be able to register for compulsory health insurance by the cantonal authorities. The coverage will retroactively apply from the moment you applied for protection status S (in-person or via the application form).
You can find information on health care in Switzerland on the following webpages:
- by the Federal Office of Public Health: Health information for people who have fled Ukraine (admin.ch)
- by the Swiss Red Cross: Information for Ukrainians | migesplus.ch
They have also put in place a hotline to answer your questions: 0041 58 387 77 20.
If you are a cancer patient please find hereafter some information by the Swiss Cancer League: Krebspatient:innen aus der Ukraine auf der Flucht (krebsliga.ch).
Beneficiaries of protection status S receive social assistance from the canton to which they have been assigned if they are fully or partially unable to earn their living independently. Social assistance covers the basic needs of daily life in Switzerland. Social assistance can take the form of benefits in kind (accommodation, food, hygiene articles, etc.) and/or money. The canton is responsible for the organisation of social assistance.
As of 27th June 2022 adults with Protection Status ‘S’ may exchange one amount of up to 10,000 hryvnia at selected branches of UBS and Credit Suisse. The exchange rate is set by the National Bank of Ukraine.
As soon as you receive your S residence permit you are allowed to start working in Switzerland (in a dependent or independent profession). Once you have found a job you will have to announce it to the cantonal authority of your future place of work and obtain an authorization before you can start your activity. It is possible to look for a job in a Canton other than the one you have been assigned to.
If you are working remotely for a foreign employer and your activity does not impact the Swiss job market, you do not need to obtain a work authorization by your Canton.
If you are looking for a job, you can register with the public employment service, once you have obtained S status.
Vocational educational training is also accessible to beneficiaries of Status S depending on their language skills. For more information on training available and requirements consult the following pages: BIZ – berufsberatung.ch and Ukrainisch – berufsberatung.ch.
Primary and lower-secondary education is compulsory in Switzerland for all children, regardless of their nationality or residence status. Children start primary school from the age of four. Public education is managed by the Cantons. The Canton to which a child has been assigned will determine when a child can start attending school and whether prior preparatory/language classes are needed. Children may therefore have to wait until they can join regular school classes. To have an overview of cantonal education structures you can consult this document (also available in Ukrainian and Russian).
If you would like to continue your higher education in Switzerland, you can find relevant information on the conditions here: Ukraine – swissuniversities and here: Individuals with status S – Perspektiven – Studium – Perspektiven – Studium
Travel outside of Switzerland
According to Swiss law protection status S holders may travel abroad and return to Switzerland with a valid recognized passport without prior authorization by Swiss authorities. For the return to Switzerland no visa is required. However, the respective entry regulations of the destination country must be complied with.
Ukrainian citizens with biometric passports can travel visa-free in the Schengen area for 90 days within 180 days as before. A “S permit card” alone is not a recognized travel document. Ukrainian citizens with non-biometric passports as well as other third-country nationals should therefore contact the consulate of the respective destination countries to clarify the entry requirements before their planned trip abroad. You can find the list of foreign representation in Switzerland here.
The SEM may revoke the temporary protection status S if the person in need of protection has stayed for more than 15 days in a 3-months period in Ukraine since the temporary protection was granted. Exception is made for those who can prove that their stay there was in preparation for their definitive return to Ukraine or for imperative reasons such a visiting an sick close relative. Protection status S will also be revoked if the person concerned lives for more than two months in a third country and has moved there his or her centre of interests.
USEFUL CONTACTS IN THE CANTONS
Once you have obtained a protection status S the Canton to which you have been assigned to will provide you with assistance:
FREIBURG: Phone: 0041 26 305 29 04 (from Monday to Friday from 8 to 11.30am and from 2 to 4.30pm)
TICINO: Phone: 0041 800 194 194 (daily from 9am to 5pm)
WALLIS: Phone: 0041 27 606 55 52 or 0041 27 606 48 00
You will also find the list of competent cantonal authorities for integration programs and well as the ones in the major cities here: Ansprechstellen für Integration in den Kantonen und Städten (admin.ch) To get more details on the Cantonal Integration Programme, please consult this page.