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Is insurance necessary for a trip to Ireland if you have the new E111?

(13 Posts)
extremelychocolateymilkroll Tue 11-Aug-09 07:50:15

My 80 year old mother is going to Ireland for a week on Saturday with my sister - last minute booking. She has been treated for breast cancer in the last 2 years and has a very small tumour in her lung but is generally in good health. Of course insurance companies only see what's in black and white and are offering quotes of about £700. Have just applied online for the new E111 form - due to arrive in 7 days so fingers crossed. Just wondered if insurance necessary if you have the E111 if we are lucky enough to get it back in time? TIA

GrapefruitMoon Tue 11-Aug-09 07:55:12

She will be entitled to reciprocal cover if she gets ill there - i.e. she can see a GP for free, get her prescriptions for free (if she gets them free here). Not sure about hospitals - probably would be ok for A&E I think?

The main reason I get cover when going to an EU country is for "emergencies" - e.g. if one of us got seriously ill or was in an accident - to cover repatriation, etc.

PortAndLemon Tue 11-Aug-09 08:08:26

Your risk is of the costs if she falls seriously ill and needs to be airlifted home or similar. I have to say that if I were being quoted £700 for a week's insurance then I'd take my chances on going uninsured.

janinlondon Tue 11-Aug-09 08:12:00

I thought reciprocal cover meant that you were entitled to whatever is standard in the country you are travelling to? You would not, for example, get free prescriptions in a European country just because you come from Wales? And if ambulance services are private in the country you are visiting, you would not receive these free just because you are English? So whatever is the standard on offer in Ireland would be what she is entitled to - not whatever is the standard in her home country. Can't see how it would work the other way?

PortAndLemon Tue 11-Aug-09 08:18:48

Yes, and IIRC Irish health cover is fantastic if you're over [some age or other -- 65 or 70, I think] although you have to pay a fair bit out of pocket below that.

extremelychocolateymilkroll Tue 11-Aug-09 10:32:57

Thanks for your replies. Think we'll stick with the E111. Have just called about the European Health Insurance card and found out that even if the card doesn't arrive by the time she leaves she is on the system so all she would need to do would be call a number they give out and they would fax through confirmation.

roses12 Tue 11-Aug-09 16:28:45

hi have u gone to ireland yet? i have 3 kids and come from dublin(live in uk). i have had trouble finding a doctor who will honour the e111. so i would advise that u call e111 and get a list of participating doctors in the area you will be visiting, before u go.

PortAndLemon Tue 11-Aug-09 16:37:48

Looking at official sites, your mother would need to make sure that any doctor she saw was contracted to the Primary Care Reimbursement Service (PCRS) scheme.

GrapefruitMoon Tue 11-Aug-09 20:32:53

janinlondon - you are entitled to get what you would get in the UK - though I would think it likely you might have to pay out in some countries and claim it back.

You definitely can get seen by a GP for free in ireland if you are normally resident in the UK - unless the rules have changed in recent years (it's a few years since I did this). I'm pretty sure I didn't have to pay for dd's prescription also...

roses12 Tue 11-Aug-09 20:54:29

hi how did u do this? i have 3 asthmatic kids and go to mums twice a year, last time i had to fork out 70euros(for a chest infection and antibiotics) it would really help me to know how to avoid those costs?

janinlondon Wed 12-Aug-09 13:03:56

From the NHS website:

"Your EHIC will allow you access to the same state-provided healthcare as a resident of the country you are visiting. However, many countries expect the patient to pay towards their treatment, and even with an EHIC, you might be expected to do the same. You may be able to seek reimbursement for this cost when you are back in the UK if you are not able to do so in the other country."

extremelychocolateymilkroll Wed 12-Aug-09 13:43:09

Thanks again for your replies. My sister has in the meantime found insurance for my mum through Age Concern for £167 and they have gone with that for peace of mind. Saga was the most expensive.

roses12 Fri 14-Aug-09 16:38:36

thanks jan i'll check that site out. cheers

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