If you are travelling to the Czech Republic, whether it is for a weekend break or a 2 week holiday, you must remember to take your European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). As with all other EU countries, the Czech Republic’s national service covers you for the majority of healthcare you might need when visiting but, as with every country, there are a couple of factors you need to take into consideration. |
Before you travel, if you want peace of mind with regards your healthcare you really must be aware of what you are entitled to with your EHIC card and what you are not. With this in mind, before you leave for your trip, you should invest in a single trip or annual holiday insurance policy so that you have all bases covered. Having said that, the EHIC does qualify you for everything that the Czech citizens receive in terms of healthcare, so, as long as you visit a state funded GP you can use your EHIC to get subsidised healthcare.
There are also several state registered hospitals, should you need more emergency care, although if your case is not an urgent one you must get a referral from a doctor. If you don’t have a referral, the standard charge may be increased.
Many people wonder how they will purchase a prescription when on holiday. In the Czech Republic, this is a simple process. The Lekarny, or pharmacy is where you get prescriptions that cost a fixed price of 30 koruna as long as you show your EHIC card. A single trip or annual holiday insurance provider may well refund the cost of these, depending on the policy.
It is worth knowing that when you pay a standard cost for your medical treatment in the Czech Republic, you cannot claim it back when you return to the UK. The payment you made is minimal and you would have paid more without the EHIC. Tourists with single trip or annual holiday insurance cover may be able to claim costs back with their insurance provider, but this obviously depends on the policy you invested in.
When healthcare is straightforward, things are clear but what about if you or someone you are travelling with requires an x-ray or a test of some sort? With the EHIC you will only be charged another 30 koruna for the subsequent treatment so you can rest assured that you won’t be too much out of pocket. Having said that, if you cover yourself with a single trip or annual holiday insurance policy before you travel, you have greater protection and may be able to claim the cost of everything back.
Staying for longer periods in the Czech Republic requires that you register with a public health insurance fund, of which there are several. The card you are then issued with qualifies you for the subsidised treatment. This is really important if you want to stay for more than 3 months.
So to summarise, when travelling to the Czech Republic the EHIC is invaluable, but is made even more so when used alongside private single trip or annual holiday insurance.
Patrick Chong is the Managing Director of InsureMore. We provide low cost travel insurance and offer a range of policies including annual holiday insurance, single-trip, multi-trip and family insurance. For all your travel cover needs, InsureMore can help you in the quickest and most cost-efficient way.
Related Articles -
Annual, holiday, insurance,