Thursday, 19 March 2009

UK travellers facing hefty medical bills for treatment in Europe

David Williams has urged Crewe and Nantwich residents who are travelling in Europe to check the renewal date on their European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). The Department of Health has warned that 3.3 million will have expired by end of March. The warning comes as new figures show that only 292,089 people have renewed their EHIC to date, leaving more than 3 million people with an out-of-date card.

David Williams, Labour's Parliamentary Candidate for Crewe and Nantwich said:

"Anyone travelling with an expired EHIC is putting themselves at risk - they will not be covered for basic medical care. It is vital that UK residents holidaying in Europe carry their EHIC and take out adequate travel insurance to avoid having to pay out unnecessarily for medical costs that could be covered by a valid EHIC."

The EHIC, which replaced the E111 form in 2005, entitles people to reduced costs or free state-provided healthcare in most European countries should they fall ill or have an accident. The EHIC can be renewed online or over the phone and will be delivered within ten days; it can also be renewed up to six months in advance of expiry.

To renew or obtain an EHIC, click here or call 0845 606 2030. For further information call the EHIC enquiries line on 0845 605 0707.

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