HEALTH CARE IN SPAIN
As expats, when comes in Spain needs essential services, for this LN ABOGADOS LAWYERS help our clients to move and live abroad easily.
First, we have to explain that Spain’s public healthcare system is among the best in the world, and it is mostly free with some conditions. Healthcare for non-residents can either be private or public, but bear in mind that expats will not have immediate access to the public system. For this reason, you should invest in a temporary travel health insurance.
Spanish healthcare is public, free, and available to every Spanish resident. People who work pay monthly social security contributions to uphold the public healthcare system. These contributions guarantee that almost everyone can access healthcare for free and only has to pay a percentage on prescriptions.
But if you do not work in Spain it is necessary to provide to a private health insurance and you need this also to require the Spanish residency.
Be advised that some health centers and hospitals offer both public and private service.
Apart from some small costs, like a deductible on prescriptions, the public healthcare system in Spain is free for every citizen. This is made possible because it is funded by social security payments from employed and self-employed workers. Everybody working and paying taxes in Spain is eligible for public healthcare, which covers almost everything you need. Spouses and children of the insured person also benefit from coverage.
Public healthcare in Spain is called SNS (Servicio Nacional de la Salud) and is more inclusive than Medicare, as it is targeted at every resident. It also provides primary care services, pediatrician, such as family medicine, nursing services, midwives, and physiotherapists, as well as all matters related to prevention, diagnosis, rehabilitation, and emergency services. You will be appointed a family doctor and pediatrician in your region, who will refer you to a specialist for everythings you needed.
The national healthcare system issues documentation for sick leave or other medical discharge certificates that are deemed necessary.
Spain offers its residents public healthcare, which is covered by social security contributions. To benefit from public healthcare, you will need:
- legal residency;
- to be registered with the Instituto Nacional de la Seguridad Social (INSS), the National Institute of Social Security;
- public health card, tarjeta sanitaria individual (this card must be shown every time you visit a public hospital or health center).
Family members of insured people may also benefit from public healthcare, but only if they legally reside in Spain. This includes spouses, children under 26-years-old, and siblings of the insured person.
You can get a tarjeta sanitaria individual at the local health center (Centro de Salud) that corresponds to your place of residence. You will need to contact your local Centro de Salud to know the exact procedures for applying for this card, as requirements may vary by autonomous regions. In general, make sure to bring your identifying information and any other documents that prove you are eligible for social security.
If you are living in Spain, but cannot benefit from Social Security (for example, you do not work in the country), or you are a beneficiary of an insured person, you can apply for public healthcare. To do so, you must go in your local security office and bring with you these documents: The application form for your right to healthcare, an ID and if you are EU citizens: the certificate of registration and national ID or passport; or Non-EU citizens: TIE (Tarjeta de Identidad de Extranjeros) and your passport.
After the INSS confirms that you qualify as an insured person or beneficiary, you can apply for a tarjeta sanitaria individual.
People who do not have medical insurance will be treated in case of an emergency, but they will be required to pay for the treatment. The costs vary depending on the type of treatment.
As mentioned above, if you do not meet the criteria for any type of public healthcare in Spain, the Spanish Social Security offers a special pay-in scheme.
Contact LN ABOGADOS LAWYERS today to jump start your move, and begin the preparations with your life in Spain.