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Disentangling Spain’s new medical prescription co-payment process

Now that Spain's new co-payment system for medications and prescription charges has come into effect we are beginning to see what the process looks like. There has been a lot of anxiety among residents of all nationalities about what the implications might be. This has not been helped by the trickle of information and regional differences in application.


The new co-payments system has been functioning since July 1 and it is now clear that:

  • Pensioners with an income below €18,000 pay 10% toward the cost up to a maximum of €8 per month.
  • Pensioners with an income above €18,000 but below €100,000 pay 10% toward the cost up to a maximum of €18 per month.
  • Pensioners with an income above €100,000 pay 10% toward the cost up to a maximum of €60 per month.
  • Non-pensioners with an income below €18,000 pay 40% toward the cost with no maximum.
  • Non-pensioners with an income above €18,000 but below €100,000 pay 50% toward the cost with no maximum.
  • Non-pensioners with an income above €100,000 pay 60% toward the cost with no maximum.

Spanish pharmacyYour income is established through your annual resident tax declaration (IRPF). If you haven’t made one of these you will always be charged a set percentage and will not be eligible for any reimbursement once your maximum payment has been reached.

In order to get your money back if you’ve made your IRPF and you’ve gone over your €8 or €18 limit there is a process to go through. This varies according to which region you live in. Here’s what you must do if you live in Valencia, for example:

1) Keep all your receipts for the medication you’ve paid for and a copy of the prescriptions.

2) Collect two forms from either the health ministry or by downloading them from the internet:

3) Complete the forms with your details and attach a:

    • Photocopy of the receipts from the pharmacy
    • Photocopy of your passport
    • Photocopy of your residencia (green paper)
    • Photocopy of your SIP card (both sides)

4) Take both forms, a copy of the forms and attachments to either your nearest post office or town hall – also take the originals of the documents listed above with you.

5) In three months the additional money you’ve paid out should be returned to your bank account.

As mentioned, the process varies between regions and you will need to contact your own health office to establish exactly which process applies to you.

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Ábaco Asesores

Ábaco Asesores is a firm of lawyers and tax advisers established on the Costa Blanca in 1999. We have clients all over the world and provide legal and tax advice in seven different languages.

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2 Comments for “Disentangling Spain’s new medical prescription co-payment process”

  1. The co payment scheme is only the first step, what about general entitlement to NHS for early retirees. There is a black hole of who knows and who cares for this group of people stuck between the UK and Spanish systems. Even more complex if you have a civil service pension still taxable in the UK.

  2. meine Frau hatte dieses Jahr einen Unfall in Spanien.Die erstversorgung wurde im Krankenhaus vorgenommen.Obwohl der Behandeltene Arzt,nach 3 Wochen eine wiedervorstellung verlangte,bekam sie kein Termin.Man sagte Ihr wiel sie Torist ist,sie müßte den schein E112 haben,obwohl Sie die Europäische Krankenkarte
    vorgelegt hatte.
    Mit freundlichen Gruß
    Bernd Steiner.

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