EHIC or European Health Insurance Cards have been in use since 2006 and have given travellers access to free emergency medical treatment when injured or poorly abroad.
Unfortunately, all this changed from the 1st of January 2021, and now many travellers are left wondering…
Can I still use my EHIC card?
If you plan to travel to the EU and have an old EHIC card, the current advice is to seek full travel insurance before you leave the UK. You may no longer have access to free emergency medical treatment and could be charged for your health care.
However, IF you are currently within an EU country and arrived there before the UK left the European Union, you are still entitled to cover. Your entitlements will continue until you leave your current position to either –
Return to the UK
Visit another country within the EU
There are circumstances where UK residents will still be entitled to free health care within the EU, but they must apply for a new EHIC card before travelling.
Am I entitled to a new EHIC card?
You can apply for a new EHIC card if –
- You qualify for a pension or benefit and have a registered an S1 or E121 form
- Be a family member to someone with a qualifying pension or benefit and have a registered S1 or E121 form
- Are a frontier worker and have a registered S1 or E106 form
- Be a family member to someone who is considered a frontier worker and have a registered S1 or E106 form
- Are a UK student studying in the EU before 31st December 2020
I live in the UK, but I am from the EU, can I still get free health care?
Anyone living in the UK from an EU country before the 31st of December 2020 will be able to apply for an EHIC card. Old EHIC cards are no longer valid.
I live in the EU, but I am from the UK. Will I still be able to access free healthcare?
Currently no clear rules on this.
The guidelines, while still new, are subject to change or indeed yet to be made clear. Our advice would be to gain full travel insurance before leaving the UK and seek further advice from the Government website. Your travel provider may be able to help you with new regulations specific to your destination. However, make sure you are fully informed to ensure a safe, stress-free, healthy trip.
If you have concerns about travelling or would like to talk to a doctor about travel vaccinations or medical certificates, talk to one of our health care professionals today.
We also have plenty of advice on vaccinations and Covid Passports!