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Getting free medical treatment in Spain

If you are a UK or EU resident then a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) will entitle visitors and tourists of European Economic Area (EEA) member countries (and Switzerland) to free or reduced-cost medical care that becomes necessary while in Spain due to illness or accident.  The EHIC gives the business traveller or tourist access to state-provided medical treatment on the same basis as an 'insured' person living in Spain. 
 
However, the EHIC won't cover you for most types of non-urgent treatment for ongoing conditions, maternity care or vaccinations so you should still take out some private medical and travel insurance because medical repatriation, on-going medical treatment and treatment of a non-urgent nature will not be covered.  If you still have your old form (E111) you need to upgrade to the EHIC - make sure you do this several weeks before your trip. 
 
The quickest way is to apply online for the EHIC  or pick up an application pack from the Post Office or telephone 0845 606 2030.  The EHIC is normally valid for three to five years and each member of the family needs their own card.
 
It is vital that you take out travel insurance when taking any trip abroad in addition to having an EHIC, regardless of your trip's duration, and not least if you are planning on taking part in some high risk activities like skiing.

Special health entitlements in Spain

If you have a chronic medical condition and need to see a doctor regularly, the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) will cover you for medical treatment so long as your condition does not necessitate treatment by specialist medical units and/or units equipped with special equipment and/or appropriately trained personnel.
 
Dental treatment is not provided under the Spanish state system so your EHIC will not entitle you to any dental treatment (except for emergency extractions) unless you are covered for dental work on your private medical insurance.  Dental practices are listed in the local Yellow Pages (Páginas Amarillas) under 'Dentistas' or find an English speaking dentist in Spain.  Once you have made an appointment take some form of ID with you. 
 
Many private dentists in Spain will offer a free medical consultation and free unlimited aftercare check-ups so shop around and get a written quotation.

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We provide an enquiry service for people interested in health services and treatment in Spain, including surgery, cosmetic surgery, and dentistry.

Featured healthcare services

If you want to know more about the healthcare services in Spain, take a look at our featured hospitals, clinics, doctors, dentists and other healthcare providers.