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Parliamentary questions
5 March 2014
Joint answer given by Mr Andor on behalf of the Commission
Written questions :E-000259/14 , P-001087/14 , E-000145/14

According to the article 35 of the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights, ‘Everyone has the right of access to preventive healthcare and the right to benefit from medical treatment under the conditions established by national laws and practices’. Member States have the obligation to ensure that the implementation of the EC law at national level is in compliance with the EU Charter.

EC law provides for the coordination and not the harmonisation of social security systems, meaning that Member States remain free to determine the details of their social security system, including which benefits shall be provided, the conditions of eligibility, how these benefits are calculated and how contributions should be paid. EC law establishes common rules and principles which must be observed by national authorities when applying national law.

According to Regulation (EC) No 883/2004 a person insured in one Member State is entitled to medical care which becomes necessary during a stay in another State. The European Health Insurance Card certifies this entitlement.

Inactive persons are subject to the legislation of the Member State of residence, which refers to the habitual centre of interests of a person. To decide where a person is ‘habitually resident’, the competent institution needs to carry out an overall assessment. As presented in the Commission’s answer to Written Question E-012596-13(1), a person may be temporarily absent for a period exceeding 90 days and still maintain the habitual residence in that State.

As regards the implication of the new Spanish legislation on the application of Regulation (EC) No 883/2004, the Commission will contact the Spanish authorities in order to obtain all available information on the matter described.


OJ C 279, 22/08/2014
Last updated: 7 March 2014Legal notice