EHIC – EUROPEAN HEALTH INSURANCE CARD
The EHIC is free of charge and you can apply or renew a card via the official EHIC online application form.
As an EHIC holder you will be able to access state-provided healthcare in European Economic Area (EEA) countries, including Switzerland, at a reduced cost, or sometimes for free.
It will cover the cost of your treatment until you return to the UK.
You are advised to keep yourEHIC card safe with your passport.
For more information about what is covered in each European country, see the NHS’s official country-by-country guide.
The EHIC card does not replace travel insurance (ie it will not cover any private medical healthcare or costs, such as mountain rescue in ski resorts, sea rescue, being flown back to the UK, or lost or stolen property).
The government therefore strongly recommends that travellers have both an EHIC and a valid private travel insurance policy. Some insurers now insist that travellers hold an EHIC, and many will waive the excess if the person seeking the insurance has one.
LOST / STOLEN EHIC CARD IN THE UK
EHIC holders that have lost their card must email firstname.lastname@example.org or write to EHIC Enquiries, PO Box 1114, Newcastle upon Tyne NE99 2TL providing your full name, UK address, date of birth and, if known, your EHIC Personal Identification Number (PIN).
LOST / STOLEN EHIC CARD WHILST ABROAD
If your EHIC is lost or stolen while you are abroad, you or someone on your behalf should apply for a Provisional Replacement Certificate (PRC). This will give you the same cover as an EHIC until you get back to the UK.
To apply, call the Overseas Healthcare Team on 00 44 191 218 1999 (Monday to Friday, 8am–5pm).
To get a PRC, you will need to provide your name, address, date of birth and National Insurance or NHS number (CHI number in Scotland or Health and Care Number in Northern Ireland).