Guidance

Healthcare for UK nationals living in the Czech Republic

How to get state healthcare if you live, work or study in the Czech Republic.

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This guidance will be updated if anything changes to how you get state healthcare in the Czech Republic.

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This information is about living in the Czech Republic. There’s different guidance if you’re visiting the Czech Republic.

You must have health insurance cover to live in the Czech Republic. Most healthcare is free if you’re insured, but you may still have to pay to use some parts of the healthcare system.

UK nationals usually access the Czech healthcare system in one of these ways:

  • joining the state health insurance scheme
  • private health insurance
  • using a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) or UK Global Health Insurance Card (GHIC) for temporary stays
  • registering a UK-issued S1 form with one of the insurance companies offering the state healthcare scheme

Healthcare if you live and work in the Czech Republic

You must register as a resident if you are planning to live in the Czech Republic for more than 90 days.

You must have health insurance cover to live in the Czech Republic. The type of health insurance you need depends on your situation.

You can join the state health insurance scheme if you’re either:

  • employed by a Czech employer
  • self-employed
  • a permanent resident in the Czech Republic (you can apply for permanent residency after living there for 5 years)
  • a dependant of the above

If you are none of the above, you need to have private health insurance that will cover you for 60,000 euros of healthcare expenses.

There are 7 insurance companies (website in Czech) offering the state health insurance scheme. Most doctors are only contracted with some of the companies.

If you already have a doctor, make sure you pay your health insurance contributions to a company they have a contract with.

You may be entitled to a Czech 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 for state healthcare

Once you’ve registered as resident, you need to join one of the 7 health insurance companies offering the state healthcare scheme.

If you’re employed by a Czech employer, they’ll arrange for you to join your chosen insurance company. Your monthly contributions will be taken out of your salary before you’re paid.

If you’re self-employed or a permanent resident who’s not working, you can register directly with one of the 7 insurance companies. You’ll pay your monthly contributions to them.

You can add your dependants on your insurance plan.

Once you’ve registered you’ll get an insurance card.

Show your insurance card with your passport when you register with a GP. You’ll need to find a GP that accepts new patients and has a contract with your insurance company.

How much you’ll pay

If you’re employed, 4.5% of your salary will automatically be deducted each month for health insurance contributions

If you’re self-employed, you’ll need to pay 6.5% of your income after tax to your insurance company. There’s a minimum amount each month.

If you’re a resident and not working, you pay fixed monthly contributions for state health insurance.

Most healthcare is free if you have state health insurance.

You need to pay part of the cost of certain medicines, but not during hospital stays.

There’s a one-off charge of 90 Czech korunas for emergency care. Sometimes you can get the money back for this, for example if you’re admitted to hospital.

You may have to pay a small charge for things like specialist tests, medical notes from your GP and health checks for your driving license application.

You’ll need to pay something towards most dental treatment. Dental care is only part covered by the state insurance scheme.

If your UK employer has sent you to the Czech Republic temporarily (‘posted workers’)

A posted worker, also known as a ‘detached worker’, is someone employed or self-employed in the UK, but temporarily sent to a European Economic Area (EEA) country.

UK posted workers can access healthcare in the Czech Republic using an EHIC, GHIC or S1 form.

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.

UK-funded healthcare: using an S1 form in the Czech Republic

There’s 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’re a Czech resident and receive a UK State Pension.

You may also be entitled to an S1 form if you’re a frontier worker (someone who works in one state and lives in another). You must contact HMRC National Insurance enquiries to find out if you’re eligible.

If you started living in the Czech Republic before 1 January 2021, you may also be entitled to an S1 if you receive some other ‘exportable benefits’.

Not all UK benefits that can be claimed while abroad entitle you to UK-funded healthcare. Read more about claiming benefits if you move abroad or contact Jobcentre Plus to ask about a benefit.

Once you have an S1 form, you must register it on the Czech system.

This will mean you and your dependants will be entitled to healthcare in the Czech Republic on the same basis as a Czech citizen.

You’ll also get:

Dependants and family members may be classified differently in the Czech Republic than the UK.

Check with the local authorities when you register your S1 form.

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 the Czech Republic

Once you’ve registered as resident, you need to register your S1 form with one of the 7 health insurance companies (website in Czech) offering the state healthcare scheme.

Once you’ve registered you’ll get an insurance card.

This will show you’re entitled to healthcare on the same basis as a Czech citizen.

Studying in the Czech Republic

You can use an EHIC or GHIC to get medically necessary healthcare until the end of your study period.

Getting treatment in the UK

Some former UK residents do not have to pay for NHS treatment when visiting England. This includes UK nationals who started living in the EU before 1 January 2021.

Read more about healthcare when you no longer live in the UK.

If you return to live in the UK you’ll be able to use the NHS like any other UK resident.

Read more about using the NHS when you return to live in the UK.

Published 23 September 2019
Last updated 16 February 2021 + show all updates
  1. Updated 'posted worker' section to reflect that posted workers can continue working and accessing state healthcare in the Czech Republic, and added detail to ‘getting treatment in the UK’ section about healthcare when you no longer live in the UK.

  2. Updated sections on living and working in the Czech Republic, using an S1 form in the Czech Republic, posted workers and studying in the Czech Republic. Changes reflect healthcare arrangements for people moving to the Czech Republic under the new rules of the UK’s deal with the EU.

  3. Updated 2 sections: ‘Healthcare if you’re using an S1 form in the Czech Republic' and ‘Healthcare if you’re studying in the Czech Republic’. Students and people with a registered S1 in the Czech Republic can now apply for a new UK European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) that will remain valid from 1 January 2021.

  4. First published.