What should I bring as proof of insurance?
Always take proof that you’re insured when you go abroad. In most cases this is a card, but for some countries you also have to show other documents. Here’s a brief overview:
- Are you going to Europe, Switzerland or Australia? In that case, you need to have your European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) with you. This is often already combined with your regular health insurance card. The EHIC details are usually printed on the back of the card. Doesn’t your card have this? Contact your health insurer.
- Are you going to a treaty country? If so, bring an E111 form with you. This form can be requested from your health insurer.
- Are you going to Cuba, Russia or South Africa? If so, bring an English-language insurance statement with you. This can be requested from your health insurer.
If you have these documents with you when you travel, you’re entitled to receive care if you require hospitalization. Most of the time you won’t have to provide a guarantee of payment. However, in some cases, you may still have to pay the hospital bill yourself first, despite the documents you provide.
Can I insure myself for medical costs abroad?
Costs abroad for medical care abroad can be more expensive than in the Netherlands. Especially if you visit a private hospital. If so, your basic insurance may not cover everything. You can take out supplementary health insurance or travel insurance that covers medical expenses. Your deductible also applies to medical expenses incurred abroad, but this is often covered under travel insurance. Don’t panic if you’re about to leave and you’re not yet adequately insured. You can add medical expenses coverage to your travel insurance up to the day of departure.
Reimbursement of medical expenses abroad
Did you pay for medical care while abroad? You’ll be reimbursed for health care that couldn’t wait until you returned to the Netherlands. This includes:
- Emergency care in a hospital
- Ambulance transport
- Medically urgent operations
- Essential medication
You do have to pay the deductible. The reimbursement can’t be higher than the cost of similar care in the Netherlands. Are you receiving health care in a private clinic abroad? It could be more expensive than the Dutch rate for similar care. Costs higher than the standard Dutch rate can be insured through travel insurance.
How do I contact my insurer?
Do you need help and don't have your health card on you? There are many useful apps that health insurance or travel insurance companies offer. In these apps, you can store your policy information, emergency numbers, or find the nearest doctor's office or hospital. It’s useful to save the emergency phone number of your health insurance company and travel insurance company in your phone. Find out what kind of extra support and services your insurance company offers while travelling.
How do you get the right help quickly while abroad? It’s good to be well prepared for your travel. If the situation allows, call your insurance company’s emergency number first if you need medical care. They’ll help you find the right care provider and make arrangements with your health insurance or travel insurance. Always keep the original bills and prescriptions of treatments. When you return home, you can still submit these to your insurer if this hasn’t been done yet.
Supplemental insurance and travel insurance
With supplemental health insurance or travel insurance you can get extra coverage for medical costs abroad. For example coverage for:
- Injuries resulting from high-risk activities and sports
- Costs of treatments that are more expensive than the Dutch rate