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Tom Brake

Liberal Democrat MP for Carshalton and Wallington

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MP’s timely European Health Insurance Card warning.

April 11, 2014 1:11 PM

Carshalton and Wallington MP Tom Brake warned local residents not to be fooled into handing over their hard-earned cash for a service provided for free by the government.

As people begin to plan their well-deserved summer escapes, one essential for the suitcase is a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). This card is valid for up to 5 years and allows you access to healthcare in a number of EU countries at a reduced cost or sometimes for free. It will cover you for treatment that is needed to allow you to continue your stay until your planned return. It also covers you for treatment of pre-existing medical conditions and for routine maternity care.

Tom warned: "This EHIC is free and provided by the government. Other unofficial websites have popped up, looking incredibly official and managing to trick people into spending their hard-earned cash on a free service."

The Department of Health receives over 3 million applications for an EHIC every 12 months and many cowboy websites look to take advantage of this.

Tom added: "A quick Google search on how to get a card and I am soon looking at websites with extortionate prices around £25."

For more information about the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) and to apply, visit the official government website: www.ehic.org.uk

Tom's EHIC cards