Healthcare Abroad - FAQs

Do I need prior authorisation to have treatment in another EEA country?

It depends on the funding route and treatment that you are planning to receive. If you are applying under the S2 route, prior authorisation is always required. Under the EU Directive route, only specialised services require prior authorisation. However, we recommend applying for funding in advance of treatment for all services, to ensure you understand your entitlement in advance of treatment. Click here to see more about funding options.

How do I find out which funding route I should apply for?

The most appropriate route will depend on a number of factors, as the rules governing each route differ. You should read the detailed information about each route and compare both options before filling in your application form. Go to funding options now.

Contact your Health Board for further advice is you are still unsure which route to choose.

How do I apply for funding?

Once you've done your research and read up on and compared the EU Directive and the S2 route, you will need to contact your Health Board for the relevant paper work. See the Funding options page about how to apply for both the S2 route and The EU Directive route.

How much will I be reimbursed?

You'll only be reimbursed for the amount the NHS would have paid for the treatment if you'd had it in the UK. This means if your treatment was more expensive abroad you'll have to pay the additional costs yourself. If the treatment would be subject to NHS charges such as prescription charges then those will also apply and be deducted from any reimbursement.

If, however, your treamtnet was cheaper abroad than it would have been in the UK under the NHS then you will be reimbursed for the full cost but you won't get a payout of the money saved under the NHS.

How much reimbursement will I receive for dental treatment carried out in another EEA country?

You need to be entitled to treatment under the EU Directive route to claim any reimbursements. How much you'll receive will depend on the type of treatment carried out. For more information on dental treatment abroad click here.

How do I access funding for dialysis abroad?

Although your EHIC covers the provision of oxygen, renal dialysis and routine medical care, you'll have to arrange and book medical treatment before you go. You should always consult your GP or hospital before travelling. Also, ensure you are not booked with a private healthcare provider, as these are not covered by the EHIC. However, if you've done your research and there are only private dialysis providers contact your health board for further advice before you travel abroad for treatment.

You need to speak to the co-ordinator in your UK dialysis unit, who will contact the dialysis unit in the EEA country you will be staying.

Can I get reimbursement for treatment received on a cruise ship?

No. Treatment required during a cruise is not covered under any healthcare agreement that the UK has with other countries in the world, including EEA countries.

Make sure you have appropriate travel insurance and have informed your insurer of your plans to have treatment abroad, such as dialysis.

Does the funding travel include my travel and accomodation costs?

No. NHS Wales does not reimburse travel and accomodation costs that you incur while seeking medical treatment in another EEA country.

Can I get funding for vaccinations in another EEA country?

No. Both the S2 and EU Directive funding routes only apply to medically necessary treatment and not preventative measures such as vaccinations or immunisations.


Last Updated: 01/04/2017 09:00:00
The information on this page has been adapted by NHS Wales from original content supplied by NHS UK NHS website