Cyprus is a wonderful holiday destination, famous for its fabulous beaches and full of interesting antiquities. The short flight to Cyprus transports you to a beautiful island that makes you feel a million miles from home – yet Cyprus is closer than you might think. |
As an AU member country Cyprus offers reciprocal healthcare, and indeed this is part of its appeal as a holiday destination among Europeans. However, while the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) offers healthcare benefits in EU countries for UK citizens, it has to be remembered that every country has a different healthcare system. You will not always get the same care as you would with the NHS in the UK. A single trip or annual travel insurance policy is always recommended.
What Are the EHIC Rules in Cyprus?
If you require medical care in Cyprus and you have a valid EHIC, you will be entitled to care at a reduced cost or sometimes for free. It is worth noting, however, that your EHIC is not valid in the Republic of Cyprus, which constitutes the northern part of the island where the government has little control over what goes on. If you are visiting this area, adequate annual travel insurance or even a single trip policy is a must.
As in most EU countries, the EHIC does not cover private treatment. If you have only your EHIC with you in Cyprus, you need to look for a state-funded doctor or hospital. Regular travellers, however, with annual travel insurance may be able to access private healthcare and claim back all the costs.
Changes in The Rules
In 2013 nominal charges came into effect for medical treatment in Cyprus. All Cypriot citizens and EU nationals now must pay 3 euros for a GP visit, 6 euros for a specialist visit and 0.50 euros for every medication received. If a Cypriot citizen does not have a medical card, or a visitor does not have an EHIC, these charges are higher. Emergency treatment for a Cypriot medical card or EHIC holder costs 10 euros, although pensioners (including pensioners from any EU country) are exempt from paying this.
Non-urgent hospital visits in Cyprus, as in the UK, require a referral, and on admission you will be asked for your EHIC. This entitles you to treatment at the same reduced rate as a Cypriot resident.
While the EHIC is a valuable means of identifying who you are and where you are from – and thus what kind of medical care you are entitled to – real peace of mind comes from having adequate insurance. A single trip policy will be enough if you only make one trip abroad a year. If you plan to make several trips to the EU, a comprehensive annual travel insurance policy is the way to go.
Patrick Chong is the Managing Director of InsureMore, an award-winning team of specialists in global single trip and annual travel insurance policies. Besides offering great deals on travel insurance, Patrick also collects and shares the best free travel competitions to help his clients get the most out of their holidays.
Related Articles -
Annual, travel, insurance,