“Los médicos trabajan para conservarnos la salud”
When we go on holiday, the last thing we are thinking about is visiting a hospital. We hope to never have to visit and never have to use our health cards or health insurance. But, accidents do happen. It is essential that we are prepared.
How prepared are you? Do you have an EHIC? Do you have health insurance? Do you know where to go, should something happen? Make sure you are prepared.
In Benidorm, there is only one hospital in the area that accepts the EHIC card. There are two hospitals in the centre of Benidorm, IMED Levante and Hospital Clinica Benidorm, however, these are both private hospitals and will not accept the free health care card.
This hospital is the Hospital Marina Baixa in Villajoyosa. This is also known around the area as Hospital Vila.
The full address of the hospital is Avenida Alcalde En Jaume Botella Mayor, 7, 03570 La Vila Joiosa, Alicante.
In an emergency, hotels will call for an ambulance to one of the private hospitals, assuming that everybody has private travel insurance. You will need to tell them you are going to Hospital Vila.
The hospital can be accessed by car, tram, bus and taxi.
This is the cheapest travel option, however, it is one of the slowest forms of transport. You will need to get the red line 1. Tickets are €1.35 for a single journey. The ticket is obtained either at Benidorm station or on the tram.
If you are accessing via tram, you can get on at C.C La Marina or Benidorm station. To get to the Hospital you want to get the tram that is heading to Luceros.
To return to Benidorm, take the line 1 again with the direction of Benidorm.
Please note: at C.C. La Marina, trams in both direction are picked up from the platform across the track. No trams stop at the closest side. You will need to cross the track whether heading to Alicante or Benidorm.
If you want to access the hospital via bus, this is possible through the Alsa bus service. The Alsa bus starts at Benidorm Bus Station and stops on Avenida Europa, Avenida Jaume, Villajoyosa and the Hospital.
The journey takes 35 minutes from Benidorm bus station and is €1.50 with a ticket obtained from the bus driver.
Not every bus stops at the hospital so you will need to ask the driver “al hospital?”
If you are accessing via taxi, you can ask for “hospital la vila” and the taxi driver will drop you off at the entrance.
A taxi can cost anything between €10-€30 depending on whereabouts in Benidorm that you are departing from.
A popular and licensed taxi working across the Benidorm region is Radio Taxi. The number for Radio Taxi is (0034) 96 58 6 26 26
Will I Be Charged?
Those that are entitled and hold a valid, in-date EHIC will be seen and given emergency treatment free of charge. However, if a follow up appointment is required with a specialist, this will need to be paid for by the patient or an insurance company.
The hospital only provides emergency care. For example, should you break a bone, this will be covered by your EHIC to have a plaster cast, however, the removal will not be covered by EHIC.
Will they Turn me Away?
The hospital is a fantastic hospital and the staff are extremely helpful. As long as you have your valid EHIC and your passport, you will be seen by a doctor. I have used the hospital myself and was seen very quickly.
On arrival, you will need to check in at reception, showing your passport and your EHIC. They may take a photocopy of this.
You will then be given a consultation. This is to get information that is needed to pass on to the doctors and assess who is more of a priority to see.
You will then be asked to sit in the waiting room. Plugs are available for phones. Your name will be called over the tannoy when it is your time.
What is a EHIC?
A European Health Insurance Card gives you the right to access state-provided healthcare during a temporary stay in another European Economic Area (EEA) country or Switzerland.
How Do I Get an EHIC?
The EHIC is a free card and can be applied for online. There are companies that offer the EHIC card for a fee. Do not use these. The website to apply for an EHIC is here.
What is not Covered?
It is important to not rely solely on the EHIC. The EHIC will NOT cover the cost of repatriation back to the UK. The EHIC will not cover accidents or incidents that are not deemed as an emergency.
Remember: It is the law to carry ID with you at all times in Spain. It is recommended to keep your passport and EHIC card with you at all times.
Stay safe and enjoy your holiday this year!