E111 Card Application
What is the E111 Card?
So why is it important to get yourself a E111 card? Well if you plan to travel to a European destination then having a valid EHIC Card will give you the same benefits from state-provided healthcare as any other permanent resident of the country. Basically, this means that if you find yourself needing medical attention while in the country, you will get the same level of treatment and pay the same fees as local residents.
However, some people confuse the European Health Card with Travel Insurance. The European Health Insurance Card is not to be seen as a replacement for travel insurance but as a complement to travel insurance. Having both will give you the most coverage. You cannot use your EHIC Card to claim for things like emergency travel back home, nor does it cover you if you intend to travel to a European country for treatment just to benefit from the reduced costs.
It is important to understand that your European Health Insurance Card will not and can not guarantee you free treatment, it purely depends on the rules of the European country you are in. Plus, the EHIC Card will not cover treatment you receive from private institutions.
How Many Years Coverage Does European Health Card Give?
You are covered for up to 5 years with your European Health Insurance Card. Keep it in a safe place as you will need to bring it with you on your European travels. If you manage to lose it somewhere or can’t find it then you need not worry, simply apply to have it reissued and you are good to go.
Does the E111 Card Have Age Limits?
The age limit to applying for your European Health Insurance Card is 16 years. If you are below this age then applying for your EHIC Card will need to be done with the assistance of an adult, parent or guardian. They will submit your details on your behalf and also need to provide their own details. As soon as it has gone through it will be sent to you within 10 working days by mail, and you will be issued separate cards.
Which Countries Accept the European Health Insurance Card?
Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands (Holland), Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Switzerland
Can I Get a Refund If I Pay for my Treatment While Holding an EHIC Card?
Each country has their own rules and regulations regarding healthcare treatment and costs, so there will be differences from country to country regarding what you do and what you don't have to pay for when it comes to healthcare.
In the UK for example, our healthcare is mostly free upon use, as it is covered by our national insurance and taxes paid. So we do not get charged when we attend a doctors appointment or visit a hospital. However, the same rules do not apply for other European countries.
What your European Health Insurance Card does entitle you to however, is you will be treated the same way as any local resident of the country. So this means that sometimes you may have to pay a fee for your treatment, and other times you may not. In some situations, you may need to pay upfront for your medical treatment and then you can seek to get a refund upon your return to the UK. You may not however be entitled to get a refund upon your return to the UK from your E111 card so keep this in mind also.