23, September 2015: According to last year’s figures, around 206 million Europeans, or 40% of the eligible population, now hold a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). Introduced in 2004, the EHIC has continued to grow in popularity: 2014 saw a four percent increase in number of cardholders over 2013, as six million people applied for and received their EHIC.
What is EHIC?
The European Health Insurance Card is available for free from the NHS (simply fill out an EHIC form and you should receive your card), it was designed to replace the various forms previously used for the purpose of ensuring access to healthcare when away from home.
EHIC holders seeking healthcare while abroad are entitled to receive healthcare on the same terms and at the same cost as local residents, although the card does not cover patients who wish to travel abroad specifically for healthcare. Applicants must be insured in their home country in order to be eligible for EHIC.
Why the Popularity?
EHIC has drastically simplified the process of ensuring that travellers are properly covered in case of sickness, injury or requisite ongoing treatment. Whereas governments previously relied on four separate forms to categorise and insure citizens, these have been replaced by a single EHIC form. The card is also free for anyone with insurance, and there is no cost associated with requesting or filing an EHIC form.
Should I Apply?
As a UK citizen, you are covered by the NHS and therefore eligible for EHIC. According to a spokesperson for All About EHIC: “The card is free and ensures you won’t have any nasty financial surprises should you require treatment abroad. If you’re considering any sort of travel in Europe, there’s really no reason not to get one”.
Indeed, the minimal paperwork is a small price to pay for peace of mind and a guarantee that you’ll be properly insured for all of your travels within the EU and EEA.
About All About EHIC:
P.K. Chong is the Managing Director of All About EHIC. As a major insurance authority, All About EHIC provides information and top up insurance for those travellers who already have the EHIC. This top up insurance will cover issues not covered by the EHIC card. Contact them at http://allaboutehic.org/
For Media Contact:
All About EHIC
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