The European Union is committed to the protection and health of all Europeans. EU’s health policy is geared towards disease prevention and access to health care. High standards of patient safety and medical products is paramount. The EHIC Card is a free or discounted scheme that guarantees medical care. It is valid in 28 EU countries along with Iceland, Norway, Switzerland, and Liechtenstein.
Countries in European Economic Area came to an agreement on healthcare. The EHIC scheme is a consequence of this decision.
The insurance coverage is given to all the cardholders from any country. However, Only state-run hospitals and general physicians have to be consulted.
Those with EHIC proof are eligible for receiving health care parity. So, Even foreigners are given medical treatment just like the local population.
The free or discounted scheme is valid for a period of 5 years only. Even UK residents are eligible for approved health care treatments(the Isle Of Man, Channel Islands are excluded).
Those who apply for EHIC scheme have to go through official channels. Even online application forms have to be submitted only at authorised websites. The EHIC Card is a little plastic card for EU citizens and family members. It assures permitted medical treatments anywhere in EEA countries. Eligible travellers also pay an exact medical fee as local patients.
- The online applications for the card are processed free of charge. Even EHIC renewals do not cost anything.
- The card holders are subject to all the specified terms and conditions(T&C). They are advised by the authorities to refer to country-by-country listings.
- European health insurance coverage is useful in case of emergencies. Patients pay a discounted fee or nothing at all as per the healthcare laws of specific countries.
- Only the state-run or public hospitals are accessible to patients. Therefore, It is not a replacement or substitute for travel insurance.
- Those who intentionally visit a country for medical treatment are ineligible. The EHIC scheme is reciprocal agreement that does not include medical tourism.
- Not all types of healthcare services and products are covered by insurance. Patients have to be well-informed and prepared for any eventuality.
- Apply or renew for a valid EHIC Card only at the official, authorised websites.
- You can also call on phone, or download the application form for postal submission.
- The insurance cards are not issued by doctors (general physicians) or post offices.
- For more details, Refer official Facebook page, Youtube, or download the related App.
- Look at expiry date as renewal process should begin at least 6 months ahead.
- Every patient should have his or her own card (employee, child, or dependent).
- Insurance card has to be shown mandatorily at the hospital or to the doctor.
- Be prepared to make initial payments and collect reimbursements at a later date.
European Economic Area(EEA) promotes free trade and access to healthcare. The EHIC Card is a valuable asset in times of emergencies and travel. Even insured non-locals are eligible for government hospital/ physician treatment. They receive identical healthcare like locals and pay discounted fees(free sometimes). Cardholders have to apply and renew through official channels. They have to be prepared and well informed of all the T&Cs.