You obtain a card by contacting a health insurance institution where you live as each individual country is responsible for producing and distributing the card in its own territory.
To be eligible for a card, you must be insured by or covered by a state social security system in any Member State of the European Union, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway or Switzerland. Each separate member of a family travelling should have their own card.
People from non-EU countries who are legally residing in the EU and are covered by a state social security scheme are also eligible for a card. However, nationals from non-EU countries cannot use their EHIC for medical treatment in Denmark, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland.
This varies from one country to another and is best to check when you contact your local health authority to obtain the card.
If you ask for the European Health Insurance Card, your local authority is obliged to provide you with one or, failing that, with a provisional replacement certificate if the card is not immediately available. If they do not, you should be able to appeal. The European Commission can offer information on how you can enforce your rights and suggests that you contact Solvit in the first instance to see how to make a complaint.
Click on a flag to find out how to apply for a European Health Insurance Card in: