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USE+FUL | European health insurance card (EHIC) | Why is it so important to have it?

What is the Health card?

The EHIC or "Health card" enables EU citizens to access to necessary medical and dental care in 33 countries within Europe according to the legislation of the respective country of stay.

Who can apply for an EHIC?

All European citizens with uninterrupted health insurance entitlements are entitled to a European Health Card. The health entitlements are interrupted if you have more than three health insurance contributions unpaid. For those, who are under the age of 14, and those under 16 who do not have identity cards, a birth certificate and the identity card of one of the parents shall be provided.

Issuance of the EHIC:

There are no fees for applying for the card. You can apply at regional health offices at a permanent address, at a branch of DSK Bank or Allianz Bank, as well as in some bookstores in the country.

The application for a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) is filled out on the spot and the ID card must be presented.

The deadline for issuance is 30 days, but often the card can be received in 15 days. The data validity permit in Bulgaria is one calendar year in the general case.

What I need to consider before using the card?

  • The EHIC can be used only if the disease is incidental;

  • The interventions are free for me, if they are free for the citizens of the respective country;

  • If I had to pay any procedure, I have the right to request that the Health Fund in Bulgaria reimburse the fee.

  • The card can’t be used if the purpose of the trip is to treat a medical problem.

I lost my card and I need medical care. What should I do in this case?

In case that you lost your EHIC card, you should ask the local institution that originally issued your health card to fax or e-mail you a certificate to replace the card. In this way you will be health insured and entitled to appropriate medical assistance.

So, if you want to spend your travelling peacefully in case of emergency, make sure you have the European health insurance card with you!

More information about the card you can find here:


by Simona Hinkova


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