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This information is about living in Slovakia. Theres different guidance if youre visiting Slovakia.
If you live in Slovakia or move there before the end of 2020, your rights to access healthcare in Slovakia will stay the same for as long as you remain resident.
This guidance explains what you need to do in Slovakia depending on your circumstances.
To access state healthcare you must have health insurance cover with one of Slovakias 3 health insurance funds.You still have to pay to use some parts of the healthcare system such as prescriptions and some emergency care.
At the moment, UK nationals usually access the Slovak healthcare system in one of these ways:
- making insurance contributions
- private health insurance
- using a UK-issued European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) for temporary stays
- registering a UK-issued S1 with one of the insurance funds
The S1 form entitles UK nationals access to state healthcare on the same basis as a Slovak citizen. Youre entitled to an S1 if you receive a UK State Pension or certain other benefits. Find out more about the S1.
Healthcare if you live and work in Slovakia
You must register as a resident if you plan to stay in Slovakia for more than 3 months.
Everyone must have health insurance in Slovakia. You need to make contributions to one of Slovakias 3 health insurance funds if youre:
- employed by a Slovak employer
- a permanent resident in Slovakia
If youre employed by a Slovak employer, your employer will arrange for your health insurance contribution to come directly out of your salary before youre paid. Theyll also pay part of the contribution for you.
If youre self-employed, you need to arrange to pay your insurance contributions directly to your chosen insurer.
You can add your dependants on your insurance plan if they are not eligible to make their own insurance contributions.
If you live in Slovakia or move there before the end of 2020, your rights to access healthcare in Slovakia will stay the same from 1 January 2021 for as long as you remain resident.
This means youll:
- continue to get state healthcare in Slovakia on the same basis as a Slovak resident
- still be entitled to a Slovak EHIC for travel, including visits to the UK
You may also have the right to apply for a UK S1 if you start drawing a UK State Pension.
How to register
First, register as a resident.
Then choose which insurance fund you want to join. There are 3 health insurance funds in Slovakia:
If youre working for a Slovak employer, tell them which fund youve chosen and theyll register you.
If youre self-employed or not working, you can register directly with your chosen fund.
Once youve registered, youll get an insurance card as a proof of your coverage.
You can also apply for a combined insurance card. This has your Slovak insurance fund details on one side and your Slovak EHIC on the other for use when travelling around the EU.
Show your insurance card when you register with your GP and each time you see a doctor.
Youll need to get a referral from a GP to see a specialist.
How much youll pay
Most treatment and services are free if you have insurance.
Basic dental treatment is free. Your dentist can tell you whats covered and what youll pay extra for.
You may have to pay for prescription medicines and home visits by a doctor.
Theres a one-off charge of 10 euros for emergency care. Sometimes you can get the money back for this, for example if youre admitted to hospital.
If your UK employer has sent you to Slovakia temporarily (posted workers)
A posted worker is someone who is employed or self-employed in the UK, but temporarily sent to another European Economic Area (EEA) country.
Currently, posted workers can use an EHIC or an S1 form to access Slovak healthcare.
HMRC has a helpline for National Insurance enquiries from non-UK residents. They can answer questions about posted worker status and explain which documents you will need to get healthcare while posted.
There will be no changes to healthcare access for posted workers in Slovakia before the end of 2020.
You can continue to use your EHIC or S1 during this time.
UK-funded healthcare: using an S1 form in Slovakia
Theres different guidance if you have an S1 as a posted worker.
You may be entitled to state healthcare paid for by the UK if you live in Slovakia and receive either:
- a UK State Pension
- some other exportable benefits
You may also be entitled to an S1 form if youre a posted worker or frontier worker (someone who works in one state and lives in another). You must contact HMRC National Insurance enquiries to find out if youre eligible.
Once you have an S1 form, you must register it on the Slovak system.
This will mean you and your dependants will be entitled to healthcare in Slovakia on the same basis as a Slovak citizen.
How to get an S1 form
If you have a UK State Pension, you must request an application form by phone from NHS Overseas Healthcare Services.
NHS Overseas Healthcare Services
Telephone: +44 (0)191 218 1999
Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm
Saturday, 9am to 3pm
How to use an S1 form in Slovakia
You must register your S1 form with one of the 3 health insurance funds in Slovakia:
You can choose which fund to join.
Once registered, youll get an insurance card as a proof of your coverage. This will show youre entitled to healthcare on the same basis as a Slovak citizen.
UK-funded healthcare using an S1 from 1 January 2021
If youre living in Slovakia before the end of 2020, your rights to access healthcare will stay the same from 1 January 2021 if youre either:
- receiving a UK State Pension
- receiving some other exportable benefits
- a frontier worker (someone who works in one state and lives in another)
This means that youll get:
- continued access to healthcare in Slovakia using your UK-issued S1 form
- a UK-issued EHIC for travel
- planned treatments in other EU countries via the S2 route
- access to the NHS in England, Scotland and Wales when youre visiting the UK
EHIC if you ha