“Prevention is better than cure” is a very old saying that applies to various life situations. Those who go on vacation do not expect the worst to happen, but life can change their lives, and when you least expect it, you’re on your way to the hospital, when you should be resting.
If you are traveling in Europe, ask for the European Health Insurance Card. It’s free and can keep you from getting into unnecessary expenses during your vacation.
Prevent yourself! Prevent a mishap from becoming a financial snub and spoil your holiday mood. If you are traveling to any of the 27 countries of the European Union, as well as Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland, do not forget to apply for the European Health Insurance Card. This will be very useful in case of unforeseen events, such as splitting a leg, becoming suddenly ill or being the target of a simple mosquito bite. What could become a disorder is minimized if you carry this card in your luggage, as it facilitates access to medical help and ensures the reimbursement of your expenses as soon as you return to the country of origin. Added to this is the fact that it is free.
The European Health Insurance Card has access to the same health care as citizens living in that country. This serves as evidence to doctors, hospitals and pharmacies, guaranteeing equal treatment holders.
- Depending on the applicable legislation in the country you are in, health care may be free.
- If you have to pay some benefits, they will be reimbursed.
- Benefits covered by the card include care for pregnant women and treatments related to already diagnosed or chronic diseases such as asthma, diabetes and cancer.
- You can perform specific treatments, such as dialysis. However, it is necessary to make arrangements before leaving the country to have access to specialized services.
What if I forget the health card at home?
Do not worry because the doctor will not refuse you the treatment. But since you do not have the document to present, it is likely that you will be asked to pay the expense in full and on return there is no guarantee that the costs you have were reimbursed. The health care provider may ask you to pay the full cost or pay part of the costs that a person insured in the same State would not have to pay.
In an emergency situation, you can ask the Social Security or the institution that covers you to send you, by fax or e-mail, a Provisional Replacement Certificate (CPS). This is equivalent to the European Health Insurance Card and gives you the same right to health care and the reimbursement of the corresponding costs during a temporary stay in another country.
How can I get the card?
You must request it in the system that covers it. If it is the general regime of Social Security or Pension Fund, you must apply at District Centers, Local Services or Citizen’s Stores. The beneficiaries of the general social security scheme may also request the card by e-mail. Once issued, the card is sent by post to the holder’s domicile, seven business days after the issuance order.
If you are under a health subsystem, you should go to the responsible institution and request the card. You can find further information on the Health Portal.