Healthcare in Spain for British citizens after Brexit: EHIC or GHIC

Healthcare in Spain for British citizens after Brexit: EHIC or GHIC

2021-11-17 17:34:59

Brits that currently live in Spain or want to live in Spain later, may question if their EHIC cards are still available after Brexit.

EHIC card (European health insurance card) is a non-transferable personal card that gives the right to receive medical care during their stay in any EU country or Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, and Switzerland.

GHIC card (Global health insurance card) is a non-transferable personal card, which gives the right to medical care in a participating country. For now, EU countries are participating, but more countries might join this agreement in the future.  

Here in this article, we will solve this doubt by explaining related regulations regarding this issue.

1. Can I use my EHIC/GHIC card in Spain after Brexit?

If you already hold an EHIC card that is issued:

  • Before the end of 2020
  • And it’s still not expired

Then you can still use it in Spain until its expiry date.

If you don’t have an EHIC/GHIC card, you can apply for a GHIC card or a new EHIC card for your travel to Spain. Depending on your circumstances, you will be given a GHIC or a new EHIC card.

2. What medical services does the GHIC/EHIC card cover?

Both cards cover the same services but are valid in different countries. They only provide emergencies or treatments for chronic diseases such as:

  • Emergency treatment and visits to A&E
  • Treatment for a long-term or pre-existing medical condition
  • Routine medical care for pre-existing conditions that need monitoring
  • Routine maternity care unless you are going to give birth abroad
  • Oxygen therapy and kidney dialysis

3. What does GHIC/EHIC card not cover?

The coverage of the card is very limited and highly restricted to emergency services. And as the NHS states, the UK EHIC or GHIC card is not a substitute for travel insurance: If you want to have a body scan, get mental health treatment, or simply arrange for a doctor's visit, you cannot do it with your GHIC/EHIC card.

Also, when you apply for certain visas, you might be required to get medical insurance coverage. Because several long-term Spanish visas require applicants to contract medical insurance that:

  • Operates in Spain
  • Full coverage, including emergencies, consultations, diagnostic tests, surgeries (inpatient and outpatient), and hospitalizations, etc
  • A minimum coverage of €30,000.00/year
  • No co-payment or deductible
  • No waiting period
  • Repatriation of remains.

Since the GHIC/EHIC card does not cover the costs of repatriation, applicants for these visas should look for another capable Spanish visa insurance that fulfills all the requirements, such as our ex-pat insurance.

4. We are more than a qualified visa insurer!

As the official website of the international office of Adeslas, Innoinsure secures you all the benefits of Adeslas together with English-speaking services.

  • We operate online with quick and automatic purchasing processes.
  • We offer timely customer support with several languages available. Especially, we have an English-speaking team that also understands perfectly Spanish, aiming to assist you with any doubts and concerns regarding the insurance
  • Adeslas is the No.1 insurance in Spain. Becoming our client, you will enjoy the largest healthcare network nationwide with over 43000 doctors and 1200 medical centers.
  • Our service is trusted and loved by customers with 27 million+ consultations realized in 2019.
  • We offer 24-hour emergency room support and phone consultation support.
  • We cover covid tests and treatments!

If you want to know more about our visa insurance, you can read this article or go directly to the information page.


[1] Applying for healthcare cover abroad (GHIC and EHIC). (2021). Retrieved 17 November 2021, from

[2] Visas (FAQ). (2021). Retrieved 17 November 2021, from

[3] Healthcare for UK nationals visiting the EU. (2021). Retrieved 17 November 2021, from

Our contents will be updated according to the most recent legislation. Last update: 17/11/2021

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