I'm living in Austria and one of my parents needs neurological rehabilitation. The health system in Italy is strongly suffering for the crisis and I would be interested in bringing the member of my family here.

Would Italy / Europe pay for healthcare here?

The question may be also generalized in: is it possible to expatriate for getting health care in one European country?

  • 3
    Probably not. I will try to elaborate a bit later but while it's often possible to get healthcare while visiting or living abroad through a specific insurance or the EHIC system, it's typically not possible to go abroad specifically to receive care, at least not without prior authorization from the relevant insurer/authorities in the country of origin.
    – Gala
    Commented Oct 6, 2014 at 14:12

1 Answer 1


No, the EHIC serves a different purpose:

The European Health Insurance Card (or EHIC) is issued free of charge and allows anyone who is insured by or covered by a statutory social security scheme of the EEA countries and Switzerland to receive medical treatment in another member state free or at a reduced cost, if that treatment becomes necessary during their visit (for example, due to illness or an accident), or if they have a chronic pre-existing condition which requires care such as kidney dialysis.

So no, you won't be able to move just to get treatment. However assuming you find a job and settle in a different country you can get health insurance there.

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