Healthcare in Spain – 1st January 2021


If you are living in Spain or move there permanently before 31 December 2020, you’ll have life-long healthcare rights in Spain as you do now, provided you remain resident.

You must register for healthcare as a resident in Spain.

Read our guidance on who can access healthcare in Spain.

State healthcare: S1

If you live in Spain and receive an exportable UK pension, contribution-based Employment Support Allowance (ESA) or another exportable benefit, you may currently be entitled to state healthcare paid for by the UK. You will need to apply for a certificate of entitlement known as an S1 certificate.

You can apply for an S1 certificate through the Business Services Authority.

European Health Insurance Card (EHIC)

If you are entitled to an S1, you are also entitled to apply for a UK-issued EHIC.

If you are not an S1 holder, but are registered for public healthcare in Spain in another way and are travelling outside of Spain, you must apply for a Tarjeta Sanitaria Europea (TSE – a Spanish-issued EHIC) online (in Spanish), or go to your nearest social security office (Insitituto Nacional de la Seguridad Social).

You must also buy comprehensive travel insurance to cover anything not covered by your TSE, EHIC or for travel to countries outside the EU.

If you are resident in Spain, you must not use your EHIC from the UK to access healthcare in Spain, unless you are a student or posted worker.

When you travel from Spain for a temporary stay in another European Economic Area (EEA) country or Switzerland, you can use your UK or Spanish-issued EHIC to access state-provided healthcare in the country. During that short stay:

There will be no changes to your healthcare access before 31 December 2020. You can also continue to use your EHIC, as you did before, during this time.