An EHIC is a free of charge European Health Insurance Card. You use the EHIC if you become ill during your holiday or temporary stay in another country. The CAK EHIC is valid in the EU (including the Netherlands), Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, United Kingdom and Switzerland, but not in your country of residence.
Applying for an EHIC
You apply for an EHIC using the online application form.
Every year you receive a new EHIC if you are still treaty-entitled. We'll automatically send it to you at the beginning of October if you have applied for the card in the previous 2 years. If not, you need to apply for the EHIC online. This is possible from October 15th.
How does applying for an EHIC work?
- You complete the application form.
- You receive a confirmation by email within 24 hours.
- We process your application.
- We contact you if there is a problem while processing it.
- We keep you informed about the progress of your application by email.
- You receive your (new) EHIC by post within 3 weeks.
You can start using your EHIC as soon as you receive it. The expiry date is indicated on the EHIC.
Entitlement to healthcare with an EHIC
You can use the EHIC when you are on holiday or staying temporarily in one of the following countries: all EU-countries plus Liechtenstein, Norway, Iceland, United Kingdom and Switzerland.
You can also use the EHIC in the Netherlands, but not in your country of residence. There you should use your local health insurance card.
You will only receive necessary medical care in the country where you are on holiday or staying temporarily. This applies only to countries where the EHIC is valid: EU, Liechtenstein, Norway, Iceland, United Kingdom and Switzerland. You'll get the healthcare according to the rules in that country.
On the website of the European Commission you can read what kind of medical care is refunded in each country. You will also find information on what you need to do to obtain a refund.
In the Netherlands you are not only entitled to necessary medical care, but also to healthcare that is covered by Dutch basis health insurance.
Yes, you can also use the CAK EHIC in the Netherlands. You are entitled to all medical care included in the Dutch Health Insurance Law (Zvw) and Long-Term Care Act (Wlz), so not only necessary care. You can also travel to the Netherlands especially to undergo a medical treatment.
Read more on I want to go to the the Netherlands for medical treatment
On the website of Zilveren Kruis you'll find information on which healthcare is covered and what you need to do to get a refund.
- Information for retirees and beneficiaries (Zilverenkruis.nl/en)
- Information for family members of cross-border workers (Zilverenkruis.nl/en)
Healthcare in private clinics is generally not refunded. Such care is often not included in a country’s statutory insurance package. For example in Spain. Healthcare in a private clinic is not part of the healthcare insurance package there. In such a case you will receive an invoice that you will have to pay yourself. The same applies to medical care on a cruise ship. Those private healthcare providers (clinics or doctors) will not accept the EHIC as a means of paying for your healthcare. You can submit those costs to us. We will assess whether reimbursement is possible. For more information go to Claiming EHIC related healthcare costs
Personal contribution for healthcare abroad
In many countries you have to pay a personal contribution. You cannot pay this by using your EHIC. You can submit those costs to us. We will assess whether reimbursement is possible. Please note that you have to submit the invoice which states the total costs, not only the personal contribution. For more information go to Claiming EHIC related healthcare costs
You can submit those costs to us under certain conditions. For more information go to Claiming EHIC related healthcare costs
Are you travelling to another EU country for a medical treatment? Then you can not use your EHIC. You may be entitled to a reimbursement. This depends on your country of residence and the country where you will be treated.
Read more on I want to go abroad for medical treatment
Are you going to the Netherlands, especially for a medical treatment? In that case the rules are different. Read more on I want to go to the Netherlands for medical treatment
The card is not an alternative to travel insurance. The EHIC does not cover private healthcare or costs such as repatriation (the journey back home) or lost/stolen property. Furthermore, you cannot use the EHIC if you are travelling to another country for medical treatment. To do so, you must always ask permission from your own health insurance fund first.
On the European Commission website you can search by country where you can use your EHIC. You'll also see what kind of healthcare will be refunded.
The EHIC is not valid in your country of residence.
Did you not receive the EHIC yet? Or have you lost your EHIC?
Please contact us via our contact form or phone +31 88 711 5551.