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4th June 2013
The HSE today (Tuesday June 4th 2013) reminded people visiting Europe during the holiday period to make sure to take a valid European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) with them. If you or a member of your family becomes ill while in the EU, the EEA or Switzerland, the card will ensure easy access to public healthcare and medical services.
People who have an EHIC already should check it’s still in date and can use the HSE website, www.ehic.ie, where you can renew online or make a new application. You can also apply for your EHIC at the HSE’s Local Health Offices or Health Centres.
The EHIC is completely free of charge via the HSE website www.ehic.ie, or from HSE Local Health Offices. While some websites charge Irish residents a fee to renew or apply for their EHIC card, this public service is available, without any charge, from the HSE on www.ehic.ie.
The card replaced the previous paper forms such as the E111 in 2004. Anyone living in Ireland or who intends to live here for a year may apply. You should carry a European Health Insurance Card if you:
If you become ill or injured during a stay abroad, in order to obtain healthcare with the Card, simply go to the nearest public health system doctor, public hospital, or other public treatment centre and present your EHIC card. Treatment in a private setting is not covered under the EHIC card.
If you own a smartphone, you can also download the free EHIC app from the European Commission, which helps you to contact health services in the country you are visiting.
You should apply for a European Health Insurance Card within one month of travel. If you are leaving at short notice, and don’t have time to apply, you can a Temporary Replacement Certificate from your HSE Local Health Office.
For more information, to apply for a card, to renew a card, or to get the EHIC smartphone app, go to www.ehic.ie or call the HSE infoline on 1850 24 1850
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