Applying For The European
Health Insurance Card (EHIC) In Czech Republic

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Prague is one of the most historical, culturally significant, and truly stunning cities in the world. From the Prague Castle to the Wallenstein Palace to the Old Town Square, St. Vitus Cathedral, St, Nicholas Church, the Royal Garden of the Prague Castle to Star Villa and to the Vysehrad Fortress that contains the Basilica of St. Peter and Paul as well as other truly remarkable sites and landmarks, this capital of the former glorious kingdom of Bohemia continues to attract millions of tourists every year. Prague is not the only gem in the Czech Republic. The whole country is. It’s got exquisite countryside, superb brewery towns, fairytale castles, great cuisine, and an equally remarkable story to tell. It is therefore not surprising that you should consider your next holiday vacation to be in the Czech Republic.

But, as in any adventure you take, things can go not as planned. You may injure yourself while frolicking in one of the country’s ski resorts or even suffer stomach upset from eating too much or your cholesterol levels might go out of control. It may be a simple fever or diarrhea or it may be an allergic reaction to something. The point is, whenever you travel overseas you will also be at the mercy of the environment of that country. While you may have your emergency first aid kit with you, there’s another more important tool that you need to carry with you wherever you go in the Czech Republic or anywhere else in the European Economic Area including the equally scenic and historic Switzerland. You will need the European Health Insurance Card.

This little piece of credit card-like instrument is your key to gaining access to the well-respected statutory healthcare system of the Czech Republic. The EHIC guarantees you medical care as if you were a Czech national yourself. Do take note however, that these treatments only apply to those funded by the country’s national health insurance system. Technically, this means services from state or government institutions and practitioners. And, as long as your intention for visiting the country is for a holiday only and not to specifically seek treatment, even your chronic medical condition will be covered. If you are pregnant and you require routine or emergency maternal care, you will also receive such treatments in the Czech Republic, just as any other pregnant woman in the country. Again, this is only if you did not intentionally go there to give birth.

It is important to understand that the EHIC is not a substitute for your personal health or travel insurance as it only covers public health care required for conditions experienced while you are in the Czech Republic as a tourist. So, if you seek treatment from a private doctor, you will need your private insurance for that. Repatriation is also not covered by your EHIC. So, before you travel to the Czech Republic make sure you have both your EHIC and your personal insurance.

While in the Czech Republic and you need to see a doctor, make sure to check first if he or she is funded by the country’s health insurance system, the Healthcare Insurance Fund. This provides health coverage for all Czech citizens on public healthcare services. By extension, you, too, can avail of these same services as anybody else.

If you go to a private doctor, your EHIC will not cover you. Instead, you will be using your own private and personal health insurance. In most cases you will be shouldering all of the expenses first before you can claim a reimbursement from your health insurance provider. If you don’t have a private health insurance, then you can expect to pay more.

Whether you use your EHIC or your personal insurance, it is a must that you secure all pertinent documents related to your treatment. These can include, but not limited to, the medical resume, medical certificate, official receipts, medical prescriptions, and receipts for medications bought.

If there is a medical emergency, you can dial 112 and a Czech English-speaking representative can assist you by dispatching an ambulance to bring you to the nearest government hospital.

The European Health Insurance Card is your ticket to enjoying a hassle-free and healthy holiday vacation in the Czech Republic. Just make sure you go there not to get treatments of undergo certain health procedures and the EHIC can provide ample coverage. Additionally, you can only seek assistance from practitioners and institutions that are funded by the state’s national insurance program.

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