Who Needs an E111?
In one word – everyone. E111 is an individual healthcare system where everyone gets their own card, personalised with their name, date of birth and nationality. Children can’t access state healthcare overseas using their parents’ cards, and married couples can’t use each other’s either. Everyone needs to be covered separately, and the right card must be presented when you attend a GP appointment or go to hospital overseas.
Most people who life in the UK permanently will qualify for E111 cover. This is where things can get confusing, as whether or not you’re entitled to an E111 depends on whether you are classed as “habitually resident” rather than on your immigration status or nationality. If you live full-time in the UK, are registered with a GP here, work or claim benefits here and don’t have homes or jobs in another country, you are likely to qualify. If there is any confusion, give the Overseas Healthcare team a call and ask for guidance and advice.
There are some groups of people who don’t qualify for an E111 from the UK government, but might be able to get one from their home country if they live in another of the E111 countries. Students are never classed as “habitually resident”, even if they study in the UK full time and only go home for holidays. People who are sent to the UK to work for a set period by an overseas employer are generally not covered either, but in these cases employers generally have private arrangements in place to cover healthcare costs. Even if you do qualify for an E111, it’s usually wise to also have travel insurance in place to pick up where E111 leaves off in terms of getting you back to the UK in an emergency or covering you for theft or cancellations.