What does EHIC stand for?
The EHIC stands for European Health Insurance Card, which has replaced the E111 card. Like an E111, the EHIC card does not function as a replacement for comprehensive travel health insurance. It is effectively an agreement with other European countries, which allows citizens of the UK to receive the same healthcare benefits as a citizen of the host country.
You are not covered for flight changes, extended stays in a country or repatriation, which means the EHIC card is intended to accompany travel insurance. It is a reciprocal agreement between the UK NHS and other countries’ healthcare systems to provide state funded healthcare in line with that which is provided for citizens.
Applying for an European Health Insurance Card form can be complicated, which is why we offer a checking service as well as verification when you are applying for an EHIC. EHIC Application staff are experts in completing these forms, and liaise directly with the NHS to ensure you are covered for your travel needs. Highly trained and vigilant, our staff will let you know if there is anything that needs amending on your form, in order to achieve a rapid processing speed via the NHS.
Which countries support the EHIC system?
The EHIC system is a reciprocal agreement to ensure that EEA countries who have opted in provide state-funded healthcare for UK visitors, in return for the UK offering the same benefits to their residents when travelling.
The countries which have opted out include The Channel Islands, including Guernsey, Alderney and Sark; Monaco; San Marino; and The Vatican. In these countries, you will need to investigate alternative healthcare options.
How quickly will I receive my card?
With help from our trained staff, who will process your application efficiently, you should receive your card within a two week time frame. Often, it will arrive much sooner than this and you can enjoy the benefits of secure travel as soon as your card arrives.
Who is eligible for an EHIC card?
The EHIC card is the UK version of an agreement with selected other European countries to exchange basic healthcare overseas for residents’ protection when they visit here. As such, the EHIC card is available to British citizens of any age. After the application service team have checked your information, we pass it to the NHS who verify if you are eligible. This is based on certain criteria and evidence. You will need to know your National Insurance number and/or NHS number to speed up applications.
If you are an expat living in the UK, do not worry. There are other forms of evidence you can supply to prove your residency and still benefit from the EHIC card’s agreement.
Children under 16 must have an adult representative apply for their EHIC card, and our helpful staff will help check all of your details to ensure that the form is filled in correctly.
Do I need to renew my EHIC card?
Upon receipt of your card, it is valid for a five year period. This means you’ll be entitled to state funded healthcare in any of the countries represented for any journey abroad for five years. Renewal is simple and we can also help with this. A renewal can be applied for from six months prior to expiration.
Should I also get travel insurance?
Yes! Wherever you are going, you need to make sure you have comprehensive travel insurance as well as the EHIC. This is because it provides basic care only, and does not cover such eventualities as needing to change flights, length of stay or even repatriation should the worst thing happen.
Our team of friendly and experienced staff are familiar with the application process and know the importance of having peace of mind where healthcare overseas is concerned. As such, they are on hand to support your application efficiently. If you have any further questions, make sure to visit our FAQs.