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Last checked: 31/10/2022

Going to a doctor/hospital abroad


In an emergency anywhere in the EU you can dial 112 free from any fixed or mobile phone to reach the emergency services

If you need to see a doctor or get hospital treatment during your stay in another EU country, having your European Health Insurance CardOpen as an external link with you will make administration and reimbursement for public health care much easier.

Differences in national systems

Health care systems vary from one EU country to another. In some countries you might have to pay the doctor or the hospital directly for treatment, even though you may not normally do that in your home country.

You can find information about the healthcare system in the country you visit from a national contact point or by selecting a country from the list below:

Choose country:

  • Austriaaten
  • Belgiumbeen
  • Bulgariabgen
  • Croatiacren
  • Cypruscyen
  • Czech Republicczen
  • Denmarkdken
  • Estoniaeeen
  • Finlandfien
  • Francefren
  • Germanydeen
  • Greecegren
  • Hungaryhuen
  • Icelandisen
  • Irelandieen
  • Italyiten
  • Latvialven
  • Liechtensteinlien
  • Lithuanialten
  • Luxembourgluen
  • Maltamten
  • Netherlandsnlen
  • Norwaynoen
  • Polandplen
  • Portugalpten
  • Romaniaroen
  • Slovakiasken
  • Sloveniasien
  • Spainesen
  • Swedenseen
  • Switzerlandchen


The European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) is only accepted by doctors or hospitals affiliated to the statutory health care system - private health care is not covered. If you use private health care, you will always have to pay the full price of the treatment yourself. However, you may be able to claim a partial reimbursement. 

Sample story

Make sure you're treated under the local public health care system

Despite having a broken arm, Ewa went on a business trip to another EU country. While she was there, her arm started to hurt, so she went to see a doctor. When she got home, she received a bill for the treatment. She discovered that the cost was not covered by her insurer under the EHIC system because the doctor had treated her as a private patient. Ewa was able to claim some money back from her insurer, but not all of it, as the cost of the treatment abroad was higher than in her own country.

Find out more about payments and reimbursements for unplanned medical treatment.

If you travel abroad to receive medical treatment, you cannot use your EHIC and different rules apply.

See also


EU legislation

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