Liechtenstein may be a small country but it’s got one of the lowest unemployment rates in the world and the planet’s third highest per capita income suggesting that even the smallest of nations can be mighty economically. Speaking of its economy, a great portion of it is driven by tourism. From the castles of Vaduz, the ski resorts of Mabun, the camping sites of Triesen, the skiing adventure camps of Triesenberg, the music festivals in Schaan, and to the architectural wonders of Balzers, Liechtenstein plays host to millions of tourists from all corners of the globe. Now, because of its economic standing, you can expect everything to be a bit pricey. And if you happen to fall ill in one of your journeys or get injured while skiing, you will be treated to the Liechtenstein brand of health care system which can also be very costly, especially if you receive treatments from private hospitals, clinics, and doctors. To help avert costly medical care, you need the European Health Insurance Card.
Liechtenstein is a member of the European Free Trade Association together with Switzerland, Iceland, and Norway. It is not a member of the European Union, however. In 1995 it joined the European Economic Area, an organization meant to bridge the EU and the EFTA. And because Liechtenstein is a member of the EEA, it is obliged to honor the provisions embodied in the European Health Insurance system whereby citizens of EEA member nations are allowed access to the universal health care services of each of these EEA member nations, but subject to the existing policies and guidelines of any particular country.
This simply means that while the EHIC (or E111 Card) guarantees you access to the public or government health care system of a particular country, you will have to abide by the rules and regulations related to the use of these healthcare services. For instance, if Liechtenstein nationals pay for a certain service, even though they obtain it from a public health care facility, you are also expected to pay for this particular service, even if it is given to you free by the government of your home country. Since you are visiting Liechtenstein, you will have to follow the rules that all Liechtenstein nationals observe.
This is why it is very important to have your EHIC with you when you travel to Liechtenstein or any of the 30 other member countries of the EEA as well as Switzerland. With the EHIC, you are guaranteed to receive (and pay) the same medical or health services received by Liechtenstein nationals. And even if you will be paying for some of these services, your EHIC will guarantee that the cost will be much lower than if you didn’t have your EHIC.
Generally, with your EHIC, you are expected to do the following in Liechtenstein:
- Call the emergency services of Liechtenstein via 112 or its medical emergency services via 144
- Pay 67 Swiss Francs for the national health insurance if you stay in Liechtenstein for less than a month (Individuals who are younger than 20 or older than 65 don’t have to pay this 1-month health insurance policy)
- Visit a doctor for medical consultation provided the doctor is contracted under the public healthcare system (the 1-month health insurance is what will cover you)
- Seek admission to a hospital in Vaduz, the only one in the country, provided you are either referred by a Liechtenstein physician or got admitted through the emergency medical services
- Pay a certain fee for any treatment that you receive while hospitalized (individuals younger than 20 years old or older than 65 will usually pay a much lower fee)
- Avail of ambulance services that is funded by the 1-month health insurance you paid for
- Pay a certain percentage of health treatment costs
Understand that the 1-month health insurance you bought does not include dental treatments that are not considered as emergency treatments. Additionally, the 67 Swiss Francs you have to pay for your health insurance, good for 1 month, may look expensive but it is actually cheap, considering the economic standing of Liechtenstein. Furthermore, if you don’t have the EHIC, this same 1-month health insurance policy may actually cost you even more. And if you require medical treatments without the EHIC, you can easily look at a healthcare expenditure that can run up to several thousands of Euros, depending on the treatment.
To save you from financial burden later on, apply for your EHIC before you go to Liechtenstein. You can get the fast and dependable online services of MyEHIC to help you obtain the card that can save you thousands of Euros on expensive treatments.