Advantages and how to obtain the European health card
Personal document that you must request from MUFACE to receive healthcare abroad
If you are a civil servant of the Spanish Public Administration and you are going on holiday, work trip, or study visit to another member state of the European Union, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway or Switzerland, you must request a European Health Card (TSE) from MUFACE, which is the document that will help you if you require healthcare.
Now, let's take a look at the following points:
It is a personal and non-transferable document for each mutual society member and his/her beneficiaries, who must possess their EHIC, which is valid for two years provided that the holders maintain the same condition.
It is a free card that enables the holder to access public healthcare (required for medical reasons) during a temporary stay in any of the 28 EU Member States, as well as Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland, with the same conditions and same costs (healthcare is free in some countries) as the people insured in the foreign country.
It is important to highlight the following points about the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC):
- -this is not an alternative to travel insurance . It does not cover private healthcare or expenses such as return flights to your country of origin or loss due to the theft of your belongings.
- -this does not cover your expenses if you travel with the express intention of receiving medical treatment
- -this does not guarantee that the service is free of charge. As healthcare systems vary from one country to the next, services that are free in your country may not be in another.
In Spain, we have a national health system, however, the systems of other countries are different. For example, the Swedish health system does not include all the services that are available in Spain and some services may involve a cost.
There are two basic systems for recovering the cost of the healthcare received while abroad, depending on the country. Some countries establish advance payment for healthcare (reimbursement schemes) or partial payment (copayment schemes). Therefore, users must inform themselves about the terms and conditions of receiving public healthcare in the country of destination before travelling, as they will be subject to the same regulations as any other citizen of that country.
If you have received healthcare in a country that has a reimbursement or copayment scheme, you can request MUFACE to refund the amount paid in accordance with the established regulations of the Mutual Society.
The EHIC provides access to public healthcare services (for example a doctor, hospital, or healthcare centre) during temporary stays in the aforementioned EU member states, under the same conditions as for the residents of these countries.
The EHIC can be requested at the Provincial Services, Representative Offices, and Electronic Office of MUFACE
Once the card's terms of validity has expired, you may request a new one.
As you will receive the same type of healthcare as any other nationals in the foreign country, sometimes mutual society members may have to pay part of the medical fees at the time of receiving care in the public healthcare system.
If the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) is misused, mutual society members will have to assume the cost of the healthcare.
You can obtain specific information about each country in order to access each healthcare system.
The European health card is an important aspect of the medical care which MUFACE members can receive abroad, but there are others:
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