Just on five years after
Directive 2011/24 / EU on the application of patients’ rights in cross-border
healthcare entered into force, the European Commission has released a report on
its implementation in the European Union:
‘Now, after five years
of the operation of the Directive, it can be concluded that cross-border
patient flows are showing a stable pattern, mostly driven by geographical or
cultural proximity. Overall, patient mobility and its financial dimension
within the EU remain relatively low and the Cross-border Healthcare Directive
has not resulted in a major budgetary impact on the sustainability of health
Directive on patients’ rights was adopted in October 2011 and was due to be
implemented in all Member States by 25 October 2013.
the Directive, every patient in the EU Member States has the right to receive
outpatient or inpatient treatment outside of the country where they are insured.
The home country only has to reimburse the costs of outpatient or inpatient
treatment up to the amount that this treatment would have cost in the home country.
Whereas outpatient treatment of the insured person generally does not require
prior approval from their health insurance fund in their home country,
inpatient treatment (e.g. an overnight stay or treatment by a highly specialised
and expensive medical infrastructure is required), is subject to approval from
the Member State in which they are insured.
adoption of this Directive, the Commission was also given the legal right to
submit certain legislative initiatives on the digitalisation of health care,
the creation of European reference networks and Health Technology Assessment
Commission’s report on the operation of the Directive was published on 21
September 2018 and is available via this link.