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Hospital Bill from Spanish Hospital

Elaine W

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2022
Hi all - I injured my leg in mid June along the Camino Frances. I went to the hospital in Lugo and was seen in the ER. They xrayed my leg (not broken), checked for an infection (thankfully no) and I received intravenous naproxen for the swelling. I was diagnosed with tendonitis, was told to rest for 2 days and get a prescription for a 7-day course of naproxen filled at the local farmacia. I did all those things.

I gave my home address and travel insurance information to the intake people at the hospital. But to date, I have not received a bill nor do I think anything has been submitted to my travel insurance company on my behalf.

Does anyone have experience with hospital billing in Spain to know what their procedures are? Do they submit a bill to my insurance? Do they just send a bill to me (back in the US)? How much time does all this take?

Thanks, in advance, for any insight or experience you all have.
 
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trecile

Moderator
Staff member
Time of past OR future Camino
PAST - Francés, Norte, Salvador, Portuguese
Yes, I received a bill a couple of months after being seen at the hospital in Santiago. I had what I thought were shin splints, but wanted to rule out a stress fracture. I only had a cursory exam and the bill was 361€!

They will not bill your insurance. You will need to pay them directly (usually via bank transfer) and submit to your insurance for reimbursement.

In May had a more serious foray into the Portuguese health care system and I'm still waiting for a bill from the public hospital where I was first seen.

I also has surgery at a private hospital where I made payment and received the bill at time of service. It was much better to know the price before leaving Spain, and to leave the hospital with a bill in hand to submit to my insurance.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2012
Your invoice may or may not arrive at anytime in the next 12 months. Spanish public health care administration is not really geared to pilgrims, though you’d think they would have grasped the nettle by now.
Provided that you’ve notified your insurer of the potential claim I think you can just relax until that letter finally arrives
 

dougfitz

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Spain: Mar 2010, Apr 2014, May/Jun 2016. Norway/Sweden: 2012, 2018. Other: 2011, 2019. CP (tbc)
My wife and I have been in a similar situation in Spain and elsewhere in Europe on our travels. Our best understanding is that treatment solely within the emergency department is provided without charge, but there will be charges for the services provided by other departments like pharmacy and x-ray.

When my wife needed treatment in Burgos, we insisted on paying the bill before leaving the hospital. This was clearly a challenge, but we did have a wonderful tour of the different sections of the hospital administrative arrangements that made that happen.

This approach had been recommended on the forum, and we were glad we heeded that advice.
 

CWBuff

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances May-June/2022
Finisterre June-July/2022
I went to a hospital in Burgos mainly to be sure that my freakin blisters on the bottom of both feet (hence I could not really see them and assess for myself) were not infected. They were not but the nice nurses still cleaned them all up and put some sterile stuff ang gauzes on them (was told to stay off the feet for 3 days...but yeah... not happened...1.5 that I did)
anyways - they processed me through ER and I nicely paid E150 on the spot
Working with my Travel Insurance (Travelex) to get reimbursed (hopefully should be no issues)
 
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OTH86

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 x 2, 2017, 2021, 2022
It seems there are different ways the health clinics and hospitals handle billings.

04/2016 - Exam and X-rays in Tres Cantos. I received a bill some months later when I was back in the States, and paid it to a bank as directed on the invoice the next time I was in Spain 6 months later.

At a university hospital in Madrid - exam and more xrays (for same injury as in TC). After a conversation, similar, I think, to @dougfitz experience in Burgos, I was allowed to pay the 400 Euro bill with my credit card.

Two other unrelated visits (2014 & 2015) to Centre de Salud (Sarria and Santo Domingo de Calzada), the doctors smiled, tore up the paperwork, and wished me a Buen Camino.

Last Fall, in Betanzos (on the Inglés), was taken to the Centre de Salud, where they asked if I was American - yes, and told me I would be charged almost 400 Euro due to our type of insurance, and I would have to pay before being seen. I was told nicely that they never get paid by US insurance. I went to a farmacia, briefly told them my situation, they told me it looked like spider bites, not bed bugs, was advised to purchase an inexpensive tube of cream which took care of the problem.

Good luck!

EDIT to the 400 Euro bill for services at the university hospital in Madrid - the medical organization that handles my Medicare needed the several page record translated, so a friend connected me with a non-profit organization and a wonderful Spanish man who worked for that non-profit translated the medical record, and I received full refund for the amount I paid. Blessings all around!🙏
 
Last edited:
Time of past OR future Camino
Latest: Rota Vicentina '19; Portuguese '19.
From all the replies on this and other past threads regarding medical bills, insurance, and "how to pay" in Spain, it definitely is not one size fits all. Apparently every region in Spain, the type of hospital you go to, and even the potential kindness of your attending physician apparently all plays a role. Be prepared that your experience will most likely be different than the reports you read here.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
CF 2006,08,09,11,12(2),13(2),14,16(2),18(2) Aragones 11,12,VDLP 11,13,Lourdes 12,Malaga 16,Port 06
My bill came about 3 weeks after I got home.
I submitted the bill to my insurance company and they sent me a check.
If you're going to make a bank transfer, be sure to include the fees in the claim.

I asked the hospital billing department to send me a link with which I could pay using a credit card.
They did and it was easy - much easier than sending a bank transfer, which is common there but not in the USA.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2023
Each region in Spain is semi-autonomous and Health Care is one of the areas where this is seen the most and this variability per region plus the attitudes of staff account for the wide differences reported here. The medical staff that I had the good fortune to have treat me for a life threatening condition were both highly professional and felt deeply that free healthcare was a basic right for everyone they saw in a hospital environment.

As a result, do what @Tincatinker suggested. Ensure that your insurance company knows about the event and the possibility of a claim and then sit back, relax and see what happens next.
 
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TrvlDad1

Covidyard Bob
Time of past OR future Camino
2017 Frances from Saria
2018 Finnisterre & Ingles
2019 Portuguese from Valenca
2020 Assisi(cancel.)
Good luck with your insurance claim. I had a clinic visit in 2019 out of the U.S., which I paid while there. I was careful to bring a detailed bill back to file a claim. But the insurance company said that was not enough; they required the medical records, which was not mentioned anywhere in the policy I could find (not that I regularly read such legalese). I never have been able to obtain the MR. It wasn’t that costly or worth the continuing hassle so I dropped it (but now have a new travel policy carrier).
 

IngridF

Intrepid Peregrina
Time of past OR future Camino
2012, 2015 ,2017, 2019
Hi all - I injured my leg in mid June along the Camino Frances. I went to the hospital in Lugo and was seen in the ER. They xrayed my leg (not broken), checked for an infection (thankfully no) and I received intravenous naproxen for the swelling. I was diagnosed with tendonitis, was told to rest for 2 days and get a prescription for a 7-day course of naproxen filled at the local farmacia. I did all those things.

I gave my home address and travel insurance information to the intake people at the hospital. But to date, I have not received a bill nor do I think anything has been submitted to my travel insurance company on my behalf.

Does anyone have experience with hospital billing in Spain to know what their procedures are? Do they submit a bill to my insurance? Do they just send a bill to me (back in the US)? How much time does all this take?

Thanks, in advance, for any insight or experience you all have.
2012 I had the same experience in Leon. 4 days RICE and pain killers. Eventually I got an invoice emailed and I paid via bank draft. Mine was around 100 Euros
 

Margaret Butterworth

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2013 (Pamplona to Burgos)
2014 (Burgos to Villafranca del Bierzo)
2015 (Villafranca to Santiago)
2016 (Le Puy to Conques; SJPP To Pamplona)
A few years ago, suffering from a knee problem, I visited two clinics. In Astorga, it was a government clinic, where they simply prescribed Ibuprofen 600. They wouldn't allow payment on the spot, but sent me a bill to my home address in Australia. The charges for paying by international transfer were higher than the bill, so I didn't pay! A year later, a reminder arrived and I replied that I would pay when I was next in Astorga

The second clinic was a private establishment in Ponferrada. The doctor gave me a cortisone injection and I paid on the spot. I took the bill home and attempted to claim from my insurance. The company insisted on getting an accredited translation of the medical document (Google Translate not acceptable). This would have cost more than the claim. So I gave up.

The "moral" of the story seems to be that practices vary throughout Spain; bureaucracy rules; and above all, Insurance companies try to avoid paying up if at all possible.
 

Karen Begley

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances - stated May 8th 2022
Hi all - I injured my leg in mid June along the Camino Frances. I went to the hospital in Lugo and was seen in the ER. They xrayed my leg (not broken), checked for an infection (thankfully no) and I received intravenous naproxen for the swelling. I was diagnosed with tendonitis, was told to rest for 2 days and get a prescription for a 7-day course of naproxen filled at the local farmacia. I did all those things.

I gave my home address and travel insurance information to the intake people at the hospital. But to date, I have not received a bill nor do I think anything has been submitted to my travel insurance company on my behalf.

Does anyone have experience with hospital billing in Spain to know what their procedures are? Do they submit a bill to my insurance? Do they just send a bill to me (back in the US)? How much time does all this take?

Thanks, in advance, for any insight or experience you all have.
Hi. I went to a clinic on the Camino Francis because I had a very bad case of bed bugs (all over my body). I was given a cortisone and antihistamine shot. I wanted to pay for the visit either by cash or credit card but they said they will bill me. I did receive a bill by registered mail. It is all in Spanish and they are looking for a wire transfer. I took it to my bank and there was not enough information to pay. My daughter in law called the clinic as she could speak Spanish and they said that they would get back to her. Still haven’t heard. Frustrating!
 
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lt56ny

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
10/22 Aragones/Frances
I am an American citizen but I live in Mexico. I use Mapfre Travel Insurance whenever I go on Camino. I take a copy of my 2 page policy. Twice I have had medical issues on my last 2 caminos. Both times I had to visit clinics 3 times. This last Camino I had to stay in the hospital for about 9 hours as they performed 4 different tests and screenings. The hospital/clinics always tell me that they will contact Mapfre directly. I have never received a bill and nothing more than a "discharge" paper that I was told I did not need to keep. The only receipts I needed to keep were from Farmacias for any meds I had to get. When I got home I gave the receipts to my agent and in about 6 weeks I received a credit on my credit card bill in the amount of the meds. I get their top insurance plan that costs me about $325US dollars for 2 months. I think it is well worth it. I have no idea if you are eligible in the United States but I think it is worth checking out.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2019
It sounded good on an earlier thread so I tried to get Mapfre insurance for my September Camino but either I was not eligible as a US citizen or I could not purchase it from outside Spain. Can't remember which situation was the problem. Buen Camino
 

TrvlDad1

Covidyard Bob
Time of past OR future Camino
2017 Frances from Saria
2018 Finnisterre & Ingles
2019 Portuguese from Valenca
2020 Assisi(cancel.)
I have GeoBlue Trekker Essential, but I am looking at switching to World Nomads due to their age, altitude & evacuation coverage. Anyone have experience with their claims handling? Thank you!
 

pjacobi

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2015, St. Jean Pied de Port to Burgos
2016, Burgos to Ponferrada
2017, Ponferrada to Atlantic Ocean
A few years ago, I required medical attention in Italy. It took 8 weeks to get the bill from Italy, which I paid in full via a bank transfer. It then took another 8 weeks for my health insurance to refund approximately 80% of the bill. US or Europe, it still took the exact same time - 8 weeks!

Oh, it was really fun trying to photocopy the hospital bill on European A4 paper size down to US standard 8 1/2 X 11!


-Paul
 
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trecile

Moderator
Staff member
Time of past OR future Camino
PAST - Francés, Norte, Salvador, Portuguese
The "moral" of the story seems to be that practices vary throughout Spain; bureaucracy rules; and above all, Insurance companies try to avoid paying up if at all possible
From my experience, if you are coming from a country outside the EU and have insurance, it's best to go to a private hospital where you can pay at time of service and receive a bill upon discharge to send to your insurance company for reimbursement.
 

hansking

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
(2013) Frances
(2016) Portuguese
(2018) Barcelon
Hi all - I injured my leg in mid June along the Camino Frances. I went to the hospital in Lugo and was seen in the ER. They xrayed my leg (not broken), checked for an infection (thankfully no) and I received intravenous naproxen for the swelling. I was diagnosed with tendonitis, was told to rest for 2 days and get a prescription for a 7-day course of naproxen filled at the local farmacia. I did all those things.

I gave my home address and travel insurance information to the intake people at the hospital. But to date, I have not received a bill nor do I think anything has been submitted to my travel insurance company on my behalf.

Does anyone have experience with hospital billing in Spain to know what their procedures are? Do they submit a bill to my insurance? Do they just send a bill to me (back in the US)? How much time does all this take?

Thanks, in advance, for any insight or experience you all have.
Hi Elaine

On my first Camino I was also taken to hospital with a swollen ankle by a friendly hospitaliero. Also tendonitis. They gave me some drugs and discharged me immediately.
When I asked for the account they told me that it was on the house and I should not worry. I don't know if this is standard practice or if you will receive an account. Anyway, in my case I was amazed at their kindness and generosity.
With best
Hans
 

TravellingMan2022

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Norte
Remember that for all citizens of EEA countries and Switzerland, all treatments are free of charge (see European Health Insurance Card)
That includes UK citizens too! Well the 27 EU countries. And it’s based on residency not nationality. Also worth checking if your country has any reciprocal health agreements. As well as with EU countries, the UK does with whole host both Europe and further afield. There’s also some countries who seem to treat foreign tourists free irrespective of nationality in their state systems. For example Argentina.
 

Molly Cassidy

Travelling light
Time of past OR future Camino
Starting May 2023 from St Jean Pied de Port
That includes UK citizens too! Well the 27 EU countries. And it’s based on residency not nationality. Also worth checking if your country has any reciprocal health agreements. As well as with EU countries, the UK does with whole host both Europe and further afield. There’s also some countries who seem to treat foreign tourists free irrespective of nationality in their state systems. For example Argentina.
If you a foreign national resident in an EU country you don't get EHIC benefits in Switzerland and Demark, I think.
 
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first one Aug/Sept '18
Hi, my father in law is pretty tight and relies solely on the insurance attached to his credit card, which did cover extensive hospitalisation and medical care in Italy.

Has anyone relied on and used this form of insurance successfully, or otherwise in Spain please?

Buen Camino
 

TravellingMan2022

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Norte
Hi, my father in law is pretty tight and relies solely on the insurance attached to his credit card, which did cover extensive hospitalisation and medical care in Italy.

Has anyone relied on and used this form of insurance successfully, or otherwise in Spain please?

Buen Camino
Sure some people have! Key Is making sure you are clear on what you are buying and what’s included and what is not. I don’t know if credit card insurance is more generic and whether you can adapt it as I have never used it! As you get older it gets tougher for many. I used to have a a million options but more recently due to changing corcimstances I am down to a couple!
 
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mick53

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Le Puy, Arles, Northe, Primativo, Portugese. VDP, VF, Way of St Francis, 88 Temples, Lycian Way
Hi all - I injured my leg in mid June along the Camino Frances. I went to the hospital in Lugo and was seen in the ER. They xrayed my leg (not broken), checked for an infection (thankfully no) and I received intravenous naproxen for the swelling. I was diagnosed with tendonitis, was told to rest for 2 days and get a prescription for a 7-day course of naproxen filled at the local farmacia. I did all those things.

I gave my home address and travel insurance information to the intake people at the hospital. But to date, I have not received a bill nor do I think anything has been submitted to my travel insurance company on my behalf.

Does anyone have experience with hospital billing in Spain to know what their procedures are? Do they submit a bill to my insurance? Do they just send a bill to me (back in the US)? How much time does all this take?

Thanks, in advance, for any insight or experience you all have.
Hi
Many years ago I had a visit to ER at Santiago Hospital, eventually saw a doctor for 10 minutes, helped him with Google Translate. Many months later got a bill for almost €300 .... after my shock I made an Insurance claim, paid my excess and paid the hospital. Expensive for just a verbal conversation!
 

trecile

Moderator
Staff member
Time of past OR future Camino
PAST - Francés, Norte, Salvador, Portuguese
Hi
Many years ago I had a visit to ER at Santiago Hospital, eventually saw a doctor for 10 minutes, helped him with Google Translate. Many months later got a bill for almost €300 .... after my shock I made an Insurance claim, paid my excess and paid the hospital. Expensive for just a verbal conversation!
That sounds similar to my experience at the hospital in Santiago in 2018. The doctor just had me move my leg in different directions, and asked if it hurt. Then prescribed me paracetamol. My bill, which came two months later was 361 Euros, and payable only by bank transfer, which cost me $30. (this thread has suggestions on avoiding high fees for bank transfers)

Contrast that to my experience at a private hospital in A Coruña in 2019 when I needed stitches. The private hospital had a woman who liaised between staff and English speaking patients. She also contacted my insurance company and got my claim started. I had X-rays, and the stiches done, and my bill was about 500 Euros, which I paid by credit card. I submitted to my regular health insurance who paid most of it, then my travel insurance who paid the balance.
 

makingtrax

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
El norte2010
Portuguese 2014
Primativo 2016
Frances sept 2017!
I have GeoBlue Trekker Essential, but I am looking at switching to World Nomads due to their age, altitude & evacuation coverage. Anyone have experience with their claims handling? Thank you!
Nomad wont insure over 65 anymore! Just saying. Cheers
 

Rita Flower

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2022 Via del la Plata
Hi, my father in law is pretty tight and relies solely on the insurance attached to his credit card, which did cover extensive hospitalisation and medical care in Italy.

Has anyone relied on and used this form of insurance successfully, or otherwise in Spain please?

Buen Camino
I am using insurance attached to my credit card - which is covered by Alliance. I read through the documentation pretty thoroughly and it seems pretty much the same as the paid ones I have had in the past - and covers people up to age 80. So paying more doesn't always get you extras. Never made a claim though and hopefully won't need to.
 

walkinglover

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances, '16 and '18; Portuguese '17; Ingles - 19
Hi all - I injured my leg in mid June along the Camino Frances. I went to the hospital in Lugo and was seen in the ER. They xrayed my leg (not broken), checked for an infection (thankfully no) and I received intravenous naproxen for the swelling. I was diagnosed with tendonitis, was told to rest for 2 days and get a prescription for a 7-day course of naproxen filled at the local farmacia. I did all those things.

I gave my home address and travel insurance information to the intake people at the hospital. But to date, I have not received a bill nor do I think anything has been submitted to my travel insurance company on my behalf.

Does anyone have experience with hospital billing in Spain to know what their procedures are? Do they submit a bill to my insurance? Do they just send a bill to me (back in the US)? How much time does all this take?

Thanks, in advance, for any insight or experience you all have.
They often treat pilgrims for free.
 
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Walton

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016 Sjpp to Sdc. 2018 Lisbon to Sdc to Finisterre. Next up hopefully VDP or Del Norte.
As a long retired travel and tourism lecturer with tens of years tourism industry experience, can I remind dear forum members about this ?

It is really important to notify your insurance company of any potential claim as soon as you can because many policies have a strict time limit for claim notifications. Be sure to read the fine print very carefully before you buy your policy because in my experience insurance companies will often look for any reason to avoid a payout. Not knowing is no excuse.

And if you do communicate with any insurance company, try to get your communication in writing or take extensive dated notes.

Unless you are of very wealthy means, I regard travel insurance as a necessary purchase, but in saying that, I'm very, very careful in making sure I absolutely understand the policy I buy and research the reputation of Company behind it before purchase. This is especially important if you have pre-existing medical conditions.

Cheers

Graham
 
Time of past OR future Camino
Latest: Rota Vicentina '19; Portuguese '19.
They often treat pilgrims for free.
When I first started looking at this forum in 2014 it seemed I was reading quite a few stories of pilgrims getting free medical attention on the Camino and was amazed that Spain was so generous. It sounds like things have changed and I'm sure rightly so; they owe us nothing. Possibly "free" service related more to treating blisters.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
first one Aug/Sept '18
Sure some people have! Key Is making sure you are clear on what you are buying and what’s included and what is not. I don’t know if credit card insurance is more generic and whether you can adapt it as I have never used it! As you get older it gets tougher for many. I used to have a a million options but more recently due to changing corcimstances I am down to a couple!
Thanks Travelling Man. My f.i.l certainly took advantage, it would have been a huge bill, for two lengthy hospitals stays etc.
Cheers
 

Walton

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016 Sjpp to Sdc. 2018 Lisbon to Sdc to Finisterre. Next up hopefully VDP or Del Norte.
The second clinic was a private establishment in Ponferrada. The doctor gave me a cortisone injection and I paid on the spot. I took the bill home and attempted to claim from my insurance. The company insisted on getting an accredited translation of the medical document (Google Translate not acceptable). This would have cost more than the claim. So I gave up.
Probably too late now Margaret, but I would check the fine print.

If the fine print didn't specify this, you might have simply said "Tell me where my policy says that I have to translate this foreign document for you?"

There is an Insurance ombudsman in Australia that is there to receive and investigate complaints regarding insurance. Maybe you could, if it is not too late, contact them?

Cheers

Graham
 
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Time of past OR future Camino
first one Aug/Sept '18
I am using insurance attached to my credit card - which is covered by Alliance. I read through the documentation pretty thoroughly and it seems pretty much the same as the paid ones I have had in the past - and covers people up to age 80. So paying more doesn't always get you extras. Never made a claim though and hopefully won't need to.
Hi Rita, I did to for my Camino in 2018, with no claims 🙏

I cross checked Al conditions extensively and found them all covering pretty much the same items very closely.

F.i.l. had 2 lengthy hospital stays and extensive stomach surgery both times; almost didn’t make it at all. MC covered the lot. He had used it when he got run over also (looking the wrong way and walked in front of a car in Egypt)

Go well
 
Time of past OR future Camino
first one Aug/Sept '18
Sorry, reposting due poor proof-reading:

Hi Rita, I did too for my Camino in 2018, with no claims 🙏

I cross checked all conditions extensively and found them all covering pretty much the same items very closely.

F.i.l. had 2 lengthy hospital stays and extensive stomach surgery both times; almost didn’t make it at all. M/Card covered the lot. He had used it when he got run over also (looking the wrong way and walked in front of a car in Egypt)

Go well
 

Mycroft

Veteran Member
A few years ago, suffering from a knee problem, I visited two clinics. In Astorga, it was a government clinic, where they simply prescribed Ibuprofen 600. They wouldn't allow payment on the spot, but sent me a bill to my home address in Australia. The charges for paying by international transfer were higher than the bill, so I didn't pay! A year later, a reminder arrived and I replied that I would pay when I was next in Astorga

The second clinic was a private establishment in Ponferrada. The doctor gave me a cortisone injection and I paid on the spot. I took the bill home and attempted to claim from my insurance. The company insisted on getting an accredited translation of the medical document (Google Translate not acceptable). This would have cost more than the claim. So I gave up.

The "moral" of the story seems to be that practices vary throughout Spain; bureaucracy rules; and above all, Insurance companies try to avoid paying up if at all possible.
So true!
 

Mycroft

Veteran Member
Nomad wont insure over 65 anymore! Just saying. Cheers
Yup. I read them the riot act last year when I found out this glitch. Told them they were ageist and I probably was in better shape than most of their office staff. Funny--I never heard back from them....
 

Mycroft

Veteran Member
I am using insurance attached to my credit card - which is covered by Alliance. I read through the documentation pretty thoroughly and it seems pretty much the same as the paid ones I have had in the past - and covers people up to age 80. So paying more doesn't always get you extras. Never made a claim though and hopefully won't need to.
What is this? Do all credit cards cover this? I vaguely remember reading something many years ago about some travel insurance if I bought the plane ticket using the card but I don't recall reading anything about health insurance. Time to investigate!
 
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Kristie

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
(2016)
I was hospitalized overnight in Pamplona in 2017 in what I believe was a public hospital. I was treated for Afib. Although I had travel insurance, they never asked for payment, nor billed me.
 

trevorcc

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
SJPD to Santiago 2013,2014, Camino de Levante Sept. 2016, Frances March 2018, planning 2020
I hope all those that fell ill are now well, in 2013 I ended with 10days in ICU with chronic renal failure in Santiago de Compostela I had insurance but with my wife back home and the hospital doctor my insurance was agreed whilst in hospital. The insurance company wanted me to pay then settle up when back home but with the help and support from the doctor we had the insurance company accept the claim before leaving (just over 30,000) when I want to finish my walk to the Cathedral the doctor put a call into Australia and had them agree to pay the hotel cost as well. When I was back in Australia I was able to send all the bills from when I first took ill in Leon. The doctors, nurses were great went back in 2014 to say thanks and catchup. In 2016 I had a heavy cold whilst walking and dropped into a clinic in Palas De Rei when I was being checked out I asked if they had details from 2013, well the doctor read the 2013 report (online) then gave me the biggest all over check as he explained he was not going to miss a thing and wee fell about laughing. Buen Camino
 

TravellingMan2022

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Norte
I was hospitalized overnight in Pamplona in 2017 in what I believe was a public hospital. I was treated for Afib. Although I had travel insurance, they never asked for payment, nor billed me.
Good to hear. Probably worth saying what nationality you are/ where you reside in these posts as that in pretty key!
 

TravellingMan2022

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Norte
As a long retired travel and tourism lecturer with tens of years tourism industry experience, can I remind dear forum members about this ?

It is really important to notify your insurance company of any potential claim as soon as you can because many policies have a strict time limit for claim notifications. Be sure to read the fine print very carefully before you buy your policy because in my experience insurance companies will often look for any reason to avoid a payout. Not knowing is no excuse.

And if you do communicate with any insurance company, try to get your communication in writing or take extensive dated notes.

Unless you are of very wealthy means, I regard travel insurance as a necessary purchase, but in saying that, I'm very, very careful in making sure I absolutely understand the policy I buy and research the reputation of Company behind it before purchase. This is especially important if you have pre-existing medical conditions.

Cheers

Graham
Spot on! I worked in the travel industry for 32 years and couldn’t agree more. Always disclose pre existing medical conditions (many of them don’t cost that much extra). Undiagnosed symptoms, however minor, make things a lot more tricky! Quirky one from a UK standpoint is residency. For the vast majority of UK policies you have to have been physically resident in the UK for 6 of the last 12 months!

And if your circumstances change even after you have bought your policy, speak with your insurance company!
 
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Why would they do that? Seems very strange? Do you mean non EU /UK residents?
Everyone who appears to be a pilgrim.

I have no direct experience of this, I have merely read about it on the forum. My impression is that it is more a thing of the past, i.e. 10-20 years ago. Reason may be that pilgrims deserve to be treated without charge - they were also housed without charge initially, especially in Galicia by the Galician government - or that doctors and smaller health centres did not know how to deal with the complicated administrative tasks of charging foreign patients or could not be bothered; their administrative systems are not set up for immediate direct payment by patients as we know.

There is one hospital in Ponferrada - Hospital de la Reina - which, as far as I know, upholds their own specific tradition of not charging pilgrims. I guess that they have special funds for it. Because medical treatment is rarely “free”; someone pays for it, even when it is not the patient him/herself.
 

TravellingMan2022

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Norte
Everyone who appears to be a pilgrim.

I have no direct experience of this, I have merely read about it on the forum. My impression is that it is more a thing of the past, i.e. 10-20 years ago. Reason may be that pilgrims deserve to be treated without charge - they were also housed without charge initially, especially in Galicia by the Galician government - or that doctors and smaller health centres did not know how to deal with the complicated administrative tasks of charging foreign patients or could not be bothered; their administrative systems are not set up for immediate direct payment by patients as we know.

There is one hospital in Ponferrada - Hospital de la Reina - which, as far as I know, upholds their own specific tradition of not charging pilgrims. I guess that they have special funds for it. Because medical treatment is rarely “free”; someone pays for it, even when it is not the patient him/herself.
Thank you! Very interesting.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
The Hospital de la Reina in Ponferrada is a hospital with a 500 year old history - similar to the Parador hotel in Santiago - but today they are of course a modern hospital and run along modern principles. They are actually a private hospital within the health provision system in Spain.

I had a look at their website. When you make an appointment online, the first thing you are asked for is your health insurance provider. The drop-down menu has a number of options. The first option is "private", followed by a long list of names, among them Cigna Life, DKV, Mapfre Espana, and numerous others specific to Spain. Cigna Life and DKV are leading insurance providers in Europe. Mapfre is apparently present in Spain but also in a number of overseas countries.

So this means that if you are insured with one of these insurance companies the clinic with not charge you directly but your insurance provider. Other Spanish hospitals may have similar arrangements with their own selection of private insurance companies. This would explain why some posters report that they provided details of their sickness insurer and did not receive invoices with the full amount for their treatment because the hospital contacted the insurer to arrange for payment. Obviously, this will not work with any foreign sickness insurance company.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2023
Hi, my father in law is pretty tight and relies solely on the insurance attached to his credit card, which did cover extensive hospitalisation and medical care in Italy.

Has anyone relied on and used this form of insurance successfully, or otherwise in Spain please?

Buen Camino
Yes, it was a total nightmare.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2023
There is one hospital in Ponferrada - Hospital de la Reina - which, as far as I know, upholds their own specific tradition of not charging pilgrims.
Yes, this is partially correct. As I found out to my subsequent cost. I was very unwell when I was in Ponferrada and I saw a poster on the wall in the albergue advising of the free clinic for Pilgrims and so I attended it.

I went in the morning at 9am and the first issue that I encountered was that they see Pilgrims after they have seen every other patient and so I was not seen until late afternoon.

I was having breathing issues and pains through out my body. When I explained this to the doctor he refused to examine me. He said that the free treatment for Pilgrims only covered feet issues and I think that he was expecting to treat blisters.

After trying to remonstrate with him to no avail I gave up trying to get my breathing issues looked at and got him to examine an old leg injury so that I could get a medical certificate to enable me to have a days rest at the albergue.

What happened next was my own fault. He prodded me so hard in the area of my old injury that the pain had me almost leap off the examination table. At this he gave me a prescription for ibuprofen and a medical certificate.

I had my day of rest and the next day I walked on and continued walking for another two days until I collapsed just past O Cebreiro where I was taken by ambulance to Lugo hospital and diagnosed with Legionella and was told that my kidneys were close to shutting down.

Of course, if I had of been sensible I would have paid for a second opinion from a competent doctor but his disregard for my symptoms led me to think that I didn't have anything serious and so I ignored them.

Moral of the story is that the value of the treatment from this famous hospital is reflected in the amount charged.
 
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peregrin peregrina

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
april 2022
I went to a hospital in Estella after a fall and had to pay $200 upfront just to get into the ER at which point they contacted my insurance company. the next day I received an email bill from the hospital showing what I had paid and what was due. my insurance insisted they would pay the hospital directly.

unfortunately, it's been five months and allianze, the insurance I got through the airline when I left, has not paid the hospital and has not reimbursed me despite hours on the phone and sending in documents numerous times. they have been a nightmare to deal with! I would strongly urge against using allianze travel insurance -getting the run around-conflicting info- hours on the phone - the worst!

lastly- the small free clinic, in estella snyway, wont even look at you if you've had a fall becsuse they insist on xrays at the hospital.

my x-rays didnt show a break so i rested a couple days and walked the rest of the way on drugs and in pain with help from the occasional bus or taxi. when i got home i found out i had a broken ankle! nonetheless i'm glad i didn't know and was able to make it to the end by hook or by crook! worth every second of it!
 
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linkster

¡Nunca dejes de creer!
Time of past OR future Camino
2022
In 2017, I broke my right wrist just before Portomarín. I took a cab to the hospital in Lugo. They took my passport etc. I had Xrays, set my wrist, and a script for anti-inflammatories and pain killers. I tried to pay before leaving, but was unable. They new I was on the Camino. I never received a bill. Several days later I went to the hospital in SdC. The cast was too tight and my fingers were turning colors by the end of the day. They had an interpreter follow me around the hospital. I had another set of xrays, saw the doctor, and they adjusted the cast a bit. I was charged $500 before I left the hospital. They did not set my wrist correctly (optimally) and I had to have an open reduction and plate ~3 weeks later when I returned home.

In 2018, I walked into Ponferrada with a sinus infection on a Friday afternoon. I checked into the Marriott and went to the ER the next morning because there were no doctors available. They took my passport when I checked in. 15 minutes later I was in the exam room with the doctor. I walked out with a script for antibiotics. When I tried to check out at the desk, the guy said they needed a copy of my passport. He was holding my passport in his hand. I said ok "vale". He handed me my passport back. I was confused. I motioned for him to make a copy in the back office. He was trying to be helpful, but we went back and forth talking past each other. I became more confused.

Finally he came out from around the desk and escorted me outside. We went around the corner in the parking lot ... this seemed to be getting weird. I listened to him tell me that I could go down the street and bring back a copy of my passport if I wanted. My Spanish was not great and I really did not understand what he was trying to tell me ... I was wanting to do the right thing and so naive. So let's have Google translate resolve this. He speaks into my phone, I read the translation, and he says go down the street, get a copy and bring it back if I wanted. WTH .. if I wanted? I read it again and looked at him puzzled. He smiled and shrugged his shoulders ... like don't worry about it. I thanked him, shook his hand, and walked away. I never received a bill.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
Us:Camino Frances, 2015 Me:Catalan/Aragonese, 2019
I listened to him tell me that I could go down the street and bring back a copy of my passport if I wanted.
I take this to mean he was trying to tell you without actually saying it to come back with your pilgrims passport / credential so you wouldn't be charged for the medical service. Probably spoken in code to keep him from being punished.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2023
Oh dear.

I think he did have hurdles, paperwork etc, but overall was very satisfied.

That was in Italy, and MCard is all-over, but they would require correct paper-work of course...
Yeah, the problem wasn't with the card issuer it was with Allianz, the insurer. It got so bad that at one point my case manager, employee of Allianz phoned the hospital pretending to be my wife in order to speak with my doctor.

I got quite a surprise when the male nurse rushed down to my bed one night and told me to unplug my oxygen so that I could go with him to talk to my wife who was on the phone calling from New Zealand. I told him that this was impossible but let him wheel me up to the nursing station anyway and when the doctor handed me the phone the person on the other end was my Allianz case manager! Who then lied through her teeth about pretending to be my wife.
 
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He speaks into my phone, I read the translation, and he says go down the street, get a copy and bring it back if I wanted.
This will always remain a mystery ☺️. I don't know Spanish well enough either but this reminds me of a polite way to ask someone to do something in other languages: si vous voulez vous asseoir - wenn Sie bitte mitkommen möchten - if you would like to sign here. You are not given an option, you are asked to do something. But as I said, no idea in your case.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
first one Aug/Sept '18
Yeah, the problem wasn't with the card issuer it was with Allianz, the insurer. It got so bad that at one point my case manager, employee of Allianz phoned the hospital pretending to be my wife in order to speak with my doctor.

I got quite a surprise when the male nurse rushed down to my bed one night and told me to unplug my oxygen so that I could go with him to talk to my wife who was on the phone calling from New Zealand. I told him that this was impossible but let him wheel me up to the nursing station anyway and when the doctor handed me the phone the person on the other end was my Allianz case manager! Who then lied through her teeth about pretending to be my wife.
😲🤥
 
Time of past OR future Camino
Latest: Rota Vicentina '19; Portuguese '19.
There are 64 posts so far on this thread. Because I have been fortunate to have had no injuries or health problems on any of my five Caminos I never would have thought there have been so many issues while walking, and this forum represents just a drop in the bucket of the big picture.
 
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linkster

¡Nunca dejes de creer!
Time of past OR future Camino
2022
There are 64 posts so far on this thread. Because I have been fortunate to have had no injuries or health problems on any of my five Caminos I never would have thought there have been so many issues while walking, and this forum represents just a drop in the bucket of the big picture.
I never had bought travel insurance prior to my accident in 2017 (I just tripped going downhill). Now, I would not travel without travel insurance. Zoltar does not always share when our accidents or illnesses will happen. 🤣 😂

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C clearly

Moderator
Staff member
Time of past OR future Camino
Most years since 2012
Can I remind people that the topic of this thread is how to pay a bill from a hospital in Spain? how hospitals bill patients. Maybe find another thread to continue discussion of insurance options, medical horror stories, and linguistics.

[Edited because I have mixed up two threads in my mind. Some of the insurance discussion may still be on-topic. Sorry 🙃]
 
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Bob from L.A. !

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Francis 2012, 2014, 2016. Camino Norte 2018. Many more to come in my future God willing !
Similar to many above, I was seen in an Emergency room for a minor mishap, paid my bill when leaving the hospital with my credit card ($175) and walked out.
Several months later I received an additional bill for $15 (medications that were not not the initial bill).
I called the hospital from the U.S. numerous times to pay by credit card, but they will not not accept my card over the phone!
My long distance phone calls trying to resolve this matter have now exceeded $15.
I guess my next time in Europe I'll stop in and pay cash
 
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Helen8453

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2013 Camino Francis - St Jean Pied de Port to Burgos
2017 - planning on Baztan Route
Hi all - I injured my leg in mid June along the Camino Frances. I went to the hospital in Lugo and was seen in the ER. They xrayed my leg (not broken), checked for an infection (thankfully no) and I received intravenous naproxen for the swelling. I was diagnosed with tendonitis, was told to rest for 2 days and get a prescription for a 7-day course of naproxen filled at the local farmacia. I did all those things.

I gave my home address and travel insurance information to the intake people at the hospital. But to date, I have not received a bill nor do I think anything has been submitted to my travel insurance company on my behalf.

Does anyone have experience with hospital billing in Spain to know what their procedures are? Do they submit a bill to my insurance? Do they just send a bill to me (back in the US)? How much time does all this take?

Thanks, in advance, for any insight or experience you all have.
Hi all - I injured my leg in mid June along the Camino Frances. I went to the hospital in Lugo and was seen in the ER. They xrayed my leg (not broken), checked for an infection (thankfully no) and I received intravenous naproxen for the swelling. I was diagnosed with tendonitis, was told to rest for 2 days and get a prescription for a 7-day course of naproxen filled at the local farmacia. I did all those things.

I gave my home address and travel insurance information to the intake people at the hospital. But to date, I have not received a bill nor do I think anything has been submitted to my travel insurance company on my behalf.

Does anyone have experience with hospital billing in Spain to know what their procedures are? Do they submit a bill to my insurance? Do they just send a bill to me (back in the US)? How much time does all this take?

Thanks, in advance, for any insight or experience you all have.
I went to a hospital between Burgos and Leon after a spider bite. When I went to pay after the consultation, but was told there was nothing to pay as pilgrims were treated without charge. A few months after arriving home in Australia, I received a bill for 140€. I paid without querying the bill.
 

OTH86

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 x 2, 2017, 2021, 2022
Interesting thread since I've had my own interactions with the Spanish health care system - all positive from my perspective.

And I wonder how people from other countries are treated in my own when they need medical care... no need for replies - just a question tossed to the wind... 😉
 

Ceci

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Ingles from Ferrol; Camino Portugues from Valenca do Minho; Camino Frances from O Cebreiro - October 2014
Hi all - I injured my leg in mid June along the Camino Frances. I went to the hospital in Lugo and was seen in the ER. They xrayed my leg (not broken), checked for an infection (thankfully no) and I received intravenous naproxen for the swelling. I was diagnosed with tendonitis, was told to rest for 2 days and get a prescription for a 7-day course of naproxen filled at the local farmacia. I did all those things.

I gave my home address and travel insurance information to the intake people at the hospital. But to date, I have not received a bill nor do I think anything has been submitted to my travel insurance company on my behalf.

Does anyone have experience with hospital billing in Spain to know what their procedures are? Do they submit a bill to my insurance? Do they just send a bill to me (back in the US)? How much time does all this take?

Thanks, in advance, for any insight or experience you all have.
In 2018, I had a heart attack while getting ready to leave Santiago. Once I got to the hospital, I was seen in Emergency, had a stent placed, and was in the hospital for 6 days or so. I spent several days in the ICU, then a couple of days in a room in the cardiac unit.
I found the treatment to be excellent and very caring. The hospital also provided medical info to my cardiologist in the US.
Upon leaving the hospital, I had to insist that they take my travel insurance info. Perhaps 4-6 months later, I was informed that the insurance had paid $7,000 for my stay. I never got a bill.
I'm sure that stay would have been much more expensive here. In any case, I am grateful they saved my life.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
CF 13, CF 14, CP 16, VF 17, CN 18, CN+RC 19, CF 22
A few years ago, I required medical attention in Italy. It took 8 weeks to get the bill from Italy, which I paid in full via a bank transfer. It then took another 8 weeks for my health insurance to refund approximately 80% of the bill. US or Europe, it still took the exact same time - 8 weeks!

Oh, it was really fun trying to photocopy the hospital bill on European A4 paper size down to US standard 8 1/2 X 11!


-Paul
In 2000 I took a bad fall in Italy and hit my head badly. Decided to go to the ER. A doctor checked me out with x-ray and such. Told me I was fine. (Gotta say the doctor was so handsome -- like someone straight out of the movies. :) ) As we were leaving we asked "how much do we owe?" They looked at us like we were crazy and said "Medical care is free in Italy." I'm an American citizen. I guess things have changed since then!
 
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Time of past OR future Camino
2018
Hi all - I injured my leg in mid June along the Camino Frances. I went to the hospital in Lugo and was seen in the ER. They xrayed my leg (not broken), checked for an infection (thankfully no) and I received intravenous naproxen for the swelling. I was diagnosed with tendonitis, was told to rest for 2 days and get a prescription for a 7-day course of naproxen filled at the local farmacia. I did all those things.

I gave my home address and travel insurance information to the intake people at the hospital. But to date, I have not received a bill nor do I think anything has been submitted to my travel insurance company on my behalf.

Does anyone have experience with hospital billing in Spain to know what their procedures are? Do they submit a bill to my insurance? Do they just send a bill to me (back in the US)? How much time does all this take?

Thanks, in advance, for any insight or experience you all have.
I had an ER visit to check my feet and was given a document to stay extra days in a large albergue, rx for anti-inflamatory cream. Equivalent of $35. Burgos I think.
 
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Hi all - I injured my leg in mid June along the Camino Frances. I went to the hospital in Lugo and was seen in the ER. They xrayed my leg (not broken), checked for an infection (thankfully no) and I received intravenous naproxen for the swelling. I was diagnosed with tendonitis, was told to rest for 2 days and get a prescription for a 7-day course of naproxen filled at the local farmacia. I did all those things.

I gave my home address and travel insurance information to the intake people at the hospital. But to date, I have not received a bill nor do I think anything has been submitted to my travel insurance company on my behalf.

Does anyone have experience with hospital billing in Spain to know what their procedures are? Do they submit a bill to my insurance? Do they just send a bill to me (back in the US)? How much time does all this take?

Thanks, in advance, for any insight or experience you all have.
As far as I know, the health service is free for residents of the EU if they present their identity card of the domestic health insurance. All these European health insurance cards are uniform and have a uniform blue and white back. I had to visit a health centre on my VdP just before Santiago, all examinations and also two injections were free of charge for me. As a hospetalero at the Astorga Albergue, I also accompanied some pilgrims to the health centre, all the procedures were free for the pilgrims, just a lot of paperwork
 

CaminoMatt73

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances & Portuguese 2016. Via de la Plata & to Porto Mar-June 2017, Norte Way in Sept.
Hi all - I injured my leg in mid June along the Camino Frances. I went to the hospital in Lugo and was seen in the ER. They xrayed my leg (not broken), checked for an infection (thankfully no) and I received intravenous naproxen for the swelling. I was diagnosed with tendonitis, was told to rest for 2 days and get a prescription for a 7-day course of naproxen filled at the local farmacia. I did all those things.

I gave my home address and travel insurance information to the intake people at the hospital. But to date, I have not received a bill nor do I think anything has been submitted to my travel insurance company on my behalf.

Does anyone have experience with hospital billing in Spain to know what their procedures are? Do they submit a bill to my insurance? Do they just send a bill to me (back in the US)? How much time does all this take?

Thanks, in advance, for any insight or experience you all have.
They do, yes. I received a hospital bill 6 months later. I’m sure it’ll get to you.
 

Margaret Butterworth

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2013 (Pamplona to Burgos)
2014 (Burgos to Villafranca del Bierzo)
2015 (Villafranca to Santiago)
2016 (Le Puy to Conques; SJPP To Pamplona)
The variation of experiences with the Spanish health system suggests to me that urgent reform is needed to bring uniformity across the country. (Just as the need for public toilets, given the huge numbers of pilgrims walking on the Camino nowadays).
 
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Time of past OR future Camino
2023
The variation of experiences with the Spanish health system suggests to me that urgent reform is needed to bring uniformity across the country. (Just as the need for public toilets, given the huge numbers of pilgrims walking on the Camino nowadays).
I think that you might find that residents of different regions of Spain value highly their ability to govern their own region's healthcare separately and as they see fit.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
The variation of experiences with the Spanish health system suggests to me that urgent reform is needed to bring uniformity across the country.
Bear in mind that the overwhelming majority of the users of the Spanish health care systems - namely people including pilgrims who live in Spain and in the other 26 EU countries - don’t care when or if hospital bills are issued and sent out. They present their tarjeta sanitaria or their EHIC card and that’s it. They don’t get invoices or want to pay by credit card.

What interests them are the monthly contributions that they must pay to be covered and to finance “”free”” healthcare. Whether doctors, health centres and hospitals handle their administration for overseas tourists including pilgrims in a uniform way or not has a low priority I’d guess.
 

SabineP

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
some and then more. see my signature.
Bear in mind that the overwhelming majority of the users of the Spanish health care systems - namely people including pilgrims who live in Spain and in the other 26 EU countries - don’t care when or if hospital bills are issued and sent out. They present their tarjeta sanitaria or their EHIC card and that’s it. They don’t get invoices or want to pay by credit card.

What interests them are the monthly contributions that they must pay to be covered and to finance “”free”” healthcare. Whether doctors, health centres and hospitals handle their administration for overseas tourists including pilgrims in a uniform way or not has a low priority I’d guess.


Thank you! ! We pay taxes here for a good reason and I'm happy that it partly covers my " free " healthcare.

Although I don't want non Europeans getting ill here in Europe , it is not up to our local administrations here to take care of those needs.

Same if I would want to visit the USA or Australia. Then I know I shall have to take extra insurance to get my trip covered.
 

odonnwp

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2022
In early October, 2021 (last year) I was taken by ambulance from Viloria de la Rioja to an Urgent Care Center, and then on to Burgos University Hospital. I rcvd 3 IV fluid bags, 2 EKG's, blood work, a Covid test, 2 ambulance rides and an overnight in an observation ward. Despite the fact I had a travel insurance policy, I was never asked for money and never got a bill. It is now nearly 11 months later. I'm not sure if this is correct, but someone suggested to me that because I was in observation and never actually 'admitted' to the hospital, this is the reason there were no charges. Not sure myself, but this was my experience. We're returning in a few weeks to complete our trek. Hope to avoid a repeat, by drinking plenty of fluids.
 

peregrin peregrina

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
april 2022
I always have purchased travel insurance on my international trips and often have used Allianz. Now I'm not sure which company to trust.
Please again- do not trust Allianz- they told me last week that they finally wired the funds for my hospital invoice and i just learned today that they did nothing of the kind and now i am being told i need to pay it myself after having been told they’d pay it since april! every single conversation with an allianz representative has been false information after waiting hours on hold. not good.
 
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trecile

Moderator
Staff member
Time of past OR future Camino
PAST - Francés, Norte, Salvador, Portuguese
Please again- do not trust Allianz- they told me last week that they finally wired the funds for my hospital invoice and i just learned today that they did nothing of the kind and now i am being told i need to pay it myself after having been told they’d pay it since april! every single conversation with an allianz representative has been false information after waiting hours on hold. not good.
I'm surprised that they said that they would pay the hospital directly. All of the travel insurance that I've bought states that I will need to pay the hospital or other provider then submit the invoices to the insurance for reimbursement.
Please correct me if I misunderstood your post.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2023
I'm surprised that they said that they would pay the hospital directly. All of the travel insurance that I've bought states that I will need to pay the hospital or other provider then submit the invoices to the insurance for reimbursement.
Please correct me if I misunderstood your post.
This depends on the situation. With smaller costs this is often the approach but with higher costs, especially tens of thousands of dollars then in my experience it is normal for the insurer to pay direct. This does need to be agreed though.

Where it can get complex is if you need to pay an excess as part of the claim and then who to pay it to, the insurer or the hospital.
 
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peregrin peregrina

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
april 2022
I'm surprised that they said that they would pay the hospital directly. All of the travel insurance that I've bought states that I will need to pay the hospital or other provider then submit the invoices to the insurance for reimbursement.
Please correct me if I misunderstood your post.
that was my understanding but they originated they would pay.
 

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