Why You Need to Get European Health Insurance Card and How to Apply

Are you going to study or work in a European country? Then, a European health insurance card is a must to eliminate the burden of unexpected health conditions happens during your stay abroad. This card will give you peace of mind because it protects your health with high-quality healthcare.

Having a European health insurance card will help you to save money on health because you do not need to pay the medical expenses alone. Therefore, before you move to Europe or other European Union countries, you should look for information about the card and how to apply it for your health protection.

Things to Know about European Health Insurance Card

If you still do not have any idea about this health care, the information below will help you understand it. Hence, if you originally come from Israel and want to move to Europe to study, work, or live momentarily, you can get this card. Below are essential things that you must keep in mind before applying for the card.

What Does European Health Insurance Card Mean?


It refers to a free card providing you with required medical access based on the state where you live temporarily in the European Union countries, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, Norway, Iceland, and Liechtenstein. It is valid under similar conditions at a similar cost and even free in some countries.

You can experience this easy medical access as long as you get insured in the specific aforementioned country. Its health benefits cover the conjunction of current illnesses or chronic diseases and the conjunction of pregnancy and childbirth. This card issue is under the national health insurance provider.

European health insurance card has different medical health coverage from other types of insurance. Here are crucial details that you need to pay attention to when applying for the card:

  • It cannot substitute travel insurance so it does not provide coverage for private healthcare abroad. It does not cover other traveling costs like baggage delays or lost and return flights to your original country.
  • It does not provide coverage to costs if you are traveling with the purpose to get medical treatment in the destination country in Europe or other European Union countries.
  • This card does not guarantee free services. Each country has a different healthcare system. Therefore, particular health services that are free of charge in a country might require payment in another country.
  • You must register using the S1 form to move your habitual residence to another country. You cannot use a European health insurance card in your new country where you move the habitual residence.

How to Apply for European Health Insurance Card?


You can get this card by contacting the health insurance institution that gives you the insurance coverage. Hence, this institution is responsible for covering your needed healthcare costs. How long this card is valid depends on the country where you live and get insured.

European health insurance card time valid varies from one country to another. Thus, it is crucial to check before you make the card application. You can ask the local health authority how long the card will last during the process of obtaining the card.

Who is Eligible for This Card?


You must get insured by the state security system for receiving benefits from a European health insurance card. You can get insured in any member state of the European Union or other countries that become members of EEA and EFTA like Switzerland, Norway, Liechtenstein, and Iceland.

If you stay abroad with your family, each family member must have their card. People from non-European Union countries like Israel are eligible for this card as long as they become legal residents in European Union countries and have covered by the state social security system.

However, you must remember that people whose nationality is from beyond European Union countries cannot use their European health insurance card for medical treatments in several countries in Europe.

Those people will not receive health coverage in Switzerland, Denmark, Norway, Iceland, and Liechtenstein.

What to Do If You Cannot Get the Card from the Local Authority and it is Unrecognized Abroad?


The local health authority must provide you with a European health insurance card. However, the local authority must provide you with a provisional replacement certificate if you cannot get the card immediately. Otherwise, you must stand out if you cannot get the card from your local authority.

If you are still unsure about the rights and require further information, you can contact Europe Advice. Their representative will help you to ensure that you get respect from national authorities about your rights to a European health insurance card.

Another problem you might face related to this card is when you are abroad but the authorities cannot recognize your card. You can ask the home insurer to contact the doctor or hospital if your European health insurance card is unrecognizable by the authorities in European Union, EEA, or EFTA countries.

Recognizing this card is very easy because the card has the same looks and mentions similar information despite it using different languages based on the country issuing the card. You can find the difference on the card’s back because its look on the back varies from one country to another.

eHow Does the European Health Insurance Card Work?


Foreign healthcare providers like hospitals will ask for reimbursement for the medical expenses from your health insurer when you get medical treatments in the European Union countries. The health insurer will identify what costs you are covered and what costs you have to pay individually.

The health insurer will determine the payment costs based on your policy and excess. Bear in mind that the health insurance card cannot cover any planned healthcare. You can ask your health insurance about the extended coverage for any planned healthcare overseas and its possibility.

A European health insurance card is necessary to obtain during your life abroad if you move into EU, EEA, or EFTA countries.

Getting this card that covers medical and healthcare expenses allow you to experience a safe and comfortable life without worrying about emergency health conditions.