All European visitors to Spain should have an EHIC (European Health Insurance) Card. This entitles you to medical treatment from state hospitals – but its use is limited. It is only meant to cover your needs until you can return to your country of residence. So what do you do if you move to Spain permanently – ie become a Spanish resident?
These are your best options: You should apply to the NHS for an E106 – which entitles you to treatment in Spanish state medical facilities for a set period – usually 18 months – 2 years.
You could also take out private medical insurance – which should allow you access to some excellent private facilities – including dentists (all dentists here are private unless you need emergency dental treatment in a state hospital). Several companies that provide private medical insurance for ex-pats living in Spain. And there are a lot of superb private medical facilities in the Benidorm area.
Shop around online for the best deals – We monitor the ads on this page and we filter out any companies that we don’t trust. Watch out for exclusion clauses! Some insurance companies will not pay out for some kinds of treatment – and/or if you have a pre-existing medical condition.
You do not have to have private medical insurance to use the private clinics and hospitals in Benidorm – and minor treatments are not overly expensive – so you could simply bite the bullet and pay for private treatment.
OUR ADVICE is to mix and match – Get an E106 in case you get seriously ill and need major hospital care. And take out some level of private insurance to cover minor care. Spanish state hospitals are very good indeed – so don’t be afraid of them! Private treatment here is not as expensive as in the UK – so it can be a good option. And dentists here are excellent – far better than most NHS dentists in the UK!
If you need medication
If you are already on medication you will need to get your UK GP to list your medicines using their generic names (not their brand names – these will be different in Spain). You can then present them to a pharmacist in Benidorm and get your medicine. You will have to pay for medicine here, but costs are not as high as in the UK. You will also find that you don’t need prescriptions for most medication in Spain – you simply buy them over the counter at a registered pharmacy.
You should also remember that even if you live in Spain – you will still be entitled to NHS treatment back in the UK – so if you need a non-emergency operation etc, you could always return to the UK.
Note:- If you plan to stay in Benidorm for less than 6 months Healthcare for Visitors