MEPs have approved a new EU law setting out patients' rights to seek medical care in another EU country.
The legislation clarifies the rules for reimbursement, including when advance authorisation may be required.
The new rules clarify that EU citizens can be reimbursed for healthcare they receive in another Member State, as long as the type of treatment and costs would have normally been covered in their own country.
Authorities may require that patients seek ‘prior authorisation’ for treatments requiring overnight hospital stays or specialised healthcare.
On the insistence of MEPs, any refusal will need to be justified according to a restricted list of possible reasons, which includes certain risks to the patient or general public.
Each country must establish a 'contact point' to provide information to patients considering seeking treatment abroad. Contact points will also provide assistance if problems occur.
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