Q: I HAVE seen newspaper articles about obtaining access to the Spanish Social Security health service either by paying a modest monthly or yearly fee, or simply applying if from a country that has agreements with Spain. I am interested in this possibility because my ill health has forced me to retire early, so I am not yet of pensionable age.
This means that I do not have a British pensioner’s access to Spanish healthcare, and as I do not work in Spain, I do not pay Social Security contributions.
There are many exclusions and problems with pre-existing conditions which make a private medical insurance not suitable for me. We are here legally, with the Certificate of Registration for EU citizens resident in Spain.
P C (Malaga)
A: YOU may be in luck. The Spanish Government has enacted two laws which provide for both possibilities. Decreto-Ley 16/2012, passed in July, makes provision for poor immigrants from outside the EU to obtain Spanish healthcare by paying modest fees, of less than €1,000 per year.
This measure was expanded by Real Decreto-Ley 1192/2012, which provides that a EU citizen from a country that has reciprocal agreements with Spain can access the national health system simply by applying.
The citizen must reside legally in Spain, with his Certificate of Registration and he cannot have an income of more than €100,000 a year. There is still some confusion about the exact form of the application but I do know of a success story from Valencia.
The applicants simply filled out Social Security application form TA1 and received provisional cards. So it can be done.