Health Care & Medical Insurance
Spanish medical facilities are among the best in the world and in case of emergency, hotel staff can usually put you in touch with a reliable doctor.
For EU citizens the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC), which you can apply for online, by phone or by post, covers most medical care. It doesn’t cover non-emergencies or emergency repatriation home. You’ll still have to pay for medicine bought from pharmacies, even if prescribed, and perhaps for a few tests and procedures. An EHIC is no good for private medical consultations and treatment; this includes most dentists and some of the better clinics and surgeries.
Citizens from other countries should find out if there’s a reciprocal arrangement for free medical care between their country and Spain. If you need health insurance, strongly consider a policy that covers for the worst possible scenario, such as an accident requiring an emergency flight home. Find out in advance if your insurance plan will make direct payments to providers or reimburse you later for overseas health expenditures.
During the summer months, the heat and too much sun are the main worry for pregnant women, babies and small children. Make sure you drink plenty of water and are covered up with a hat, cool clothing and suncreen. If your baby is younger than six months, it's best to keep her out of the sun completely. Bottled water is available everywhere and is usually fairly cheap. Pharmacies are helpful for minor ailments. The pharmacists are usually English-speaking, knowledgeable and can supply a wide range of medicines and first-aid supplies. If a pharmacy is closed, the address of the nearest is usually posted on the door.