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Old 05.11.2015, 04:22
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European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) - British in Switzerland

I am a British citizen who has lived away from UK for a four years. I am returning to Europe imminently to live in Switzerland. My old EHIC card has expired and I am unsure as to how I apply for a new one, as strictly speaking I am not a UK citizen (though I still have a registered address there and spend a few weeks per year there).

I am assuming that I still have the general right to state-equivilent healthcare around the EU countries as a British (and therefore EU) citizen. It may be pertinent (though I'm not sure) that I do not intend to stay in Switzerland permenantly or take out any 'permenant residence' or an equivilent, nor have I done this in the non-EU country where I currently am. I intend to return to UK eventually.

Has anyone been through the same process or can advise me accordingly?


PS. I specifically require this ongoing cover for travel in Europe away from Switzerland and UK. I will have full health insurance in place in Switzerland within three months of arrival. In summary, I am not suggesting I intend to use this as an alternative to mandatory health insurance in Switzerland, though would like the peace of mind that if I was to fall ill when visiting elsewhere in Europe I would be covered.

Last edited by highsandlows; 05.11.2015 at 04:46. Reason: Minor addition
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Old 05.11.2015, 09:15
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Re: European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) - British in Switzerland

"Full health cover" in Switzerland also covers the rest of europe incl the UK.. The back of the swiss insurance card IS an EHIC card.


Simple
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Old 05.11.2015, 09:21
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Re: European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) - British in Switzerland

I'm confused. You say you're not taking up permanent residence, but will have full insurance within 3 months. If you register as being a resident here you have to take out the mandatory Swiss health insurance and that will give you a new EHIC card.
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Old 05.11.2015, 09:40
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Re: European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) - British in Switzerland

Fantastic, thanks for the information. That makes sense, though I was not aware that it worked like that.

Apologies, my terminology is incorrect. I am indeed taking up residency in Switzerland (for employment there). What I in fact meant was I do not intend to stay in Switzerland permenantly i.e. for the rest of my life. Poor use of wording.

Thanks again, and I will be sure to have my health insurance in place in good time.
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Old 05.11.2015, 09:41
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Re: European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) - British in Switzerland

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I am a British citizen ....... as strictly speaking I am not a UK citizen
A little confusing maybe?

Anyway, the EHIC card is residence based and nationality based. If you've not ordinarily resident in the UK (from information you provided it appears you're not, the tax definition is used) you can't get get a UK one.

Swiss healthcare is required from day 1 of your residence in Switzerland. It will be back-dated if necessary
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Old 05.11.2015, 09:45
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Re: European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) - British in Switzerland

And a hypothetical scenario, out of curiosity:

Supposing I arrive on day one, apply for health insurance on day two, but travel to (say) Germany on day three before it is granted, am I still covered for emergency treatment or not.

I understand that if I fell ill in Switzerland before the health insurance was granted, I could be treated as my back-dated premiums to the day I arrived would honour it.

Apologies for a further question, I just want to get it straight in my head so I know where I stand.
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Old 05.11.2015, 09:55
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Re: European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) - British in Switzerland

I think so, but you'd have to pay the emergency bill yourself and claim it back from the insurance company afterwards.
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Old 05.11.2015, 10:02
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Re: European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) - British in Switzerland

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A little confusing maybe?
I'm not with it today. It should have read "I am a British citizen", "I am not a British resident".
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Old 05.11.2015, 10:02
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Re: European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) - British in Switzerland

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I think so, but you'd have to pay the emergency bill yourself and claim it back from the insurance company afterwards.
Great. Thanks.
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Old 05.11.2015, 10:47
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Re: European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) - British in Switzerland

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I think so, but you'd have to pay the emergency bill yourself and claim it back from the insurance company afterwards.
I'd expect that too, but it's best to give your insurer a call and double check before you leave.
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Old 05.11.2015, 10:52
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Re: European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) - British in Switzerland

I will be sure to do that. Just out of interest, how long does it typically take from application to 'being insured'?

I see no reason why I couldn't apply for my health insurance upon the day of arrival (or shortly thereafter). Thanks to websites like Comparis, I can do my research so I'm ready to go.
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Old 05.11.2015, 10:58
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Re: European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) - British in Switzerland

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I see no reason why I couldn't apply for my health insurance upon the day of arrival (or shortly thereafter). Thanks to websites like Comparis, I can do my research so I'm ready to go.
I think you need your permit, but once you have that, then sure you can apply straight away.

If I remember rightly, I got a temporary "card" as a PDF that was good enough to present for Swiss medical care, but not sure if it'd be accepted for EHIC.

My actual card took a couple of months to arrive (but I suspect my employer buggering about may have delayed it).
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Old 05.11.2015, 11:37
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Re: European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) - British in Switzerland

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I will be sure to do that. Just out of interest, how long does it typically take from application to 'being insured'?

I see no reason why I couldn't apply for my health insurance upon the day of arrival (or shortly thereafter). Thanks to websites like Comparis, I can do my research so I'm ready to go.
You are insured on the spot.. Immediate..

For example I signed the papers and got an insurance number on day one.. but didn't receive any cards or certificates or even pay anything for around 3-4 months. During that time i could still go to the doctors.
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