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New Universal Healthcare Royal Decree - Consequences Convenio Especial

UPDATE 9.8.2018 Info obtained from Málaga Delegación de Salud: Yes the Junta in at least Malaga are annulling the convenio especial. They say that all those registered for this healthcare, will receive a communication. In the meantime they are still covered but will not guarantee by whom. The CCAA are waiting for INSS to prepare their regulations. This information has been given verbally, over the phone, and CAB Spain cannot give any guarantees at present.


UPDATE 8.8.2018 One of our members, from the UK, resident for 3 years, joined the Convenio Especial in Andalucia, informed us today that his payment for the month of August had come back. After making enquiries he was told that his cover had ceased to exist on July 31st, direct debit been cancelled from the side of the Junta, exactly as we informed members last week.

So it appears that if you are now entitled to publicly funded healthcare, you will not receive notification from the relevant Junta, but will only notice your subscription to the Convenio has been cancelled when your DD payment comes back. The exact date of the cancelation of your policy will depend on the date you signed up. But according to the new Decree cover will have been withdrawn since August 1st 2018! We at CAB Spain interpret the feedback given by member as positive, as the new Decree clearly states that only those that would now be entitled to publicly funded healthcare, would be cut off from the Convenio Especial.

Another member (from the EU) tried to apply for the Convenio Especial this past week and was denied access, and referred to the INSS  (the INSS did not assist as they appear to be still waiting for instructions) and the new Decree, to apply for publicly funded healthcare (so free). Another positive development.

We need to consider though, that for the Junta´s to stop payments to the Convenio Especial is a relatively simple act, although we feel they should have notified those affected first, but it´s more complicated for the INSS to set up the regulations on how to accredit entitlement, as have to convene with Social Services as well, to cover specific cases that would involve them. And each Autonomous Region their own regulations. So this will take a bit longer. We have asked the Junta de Andalucia by email for clarification about cover for those now effectively ´in limbo´.

Original text: CAB Advisers are scrutinising the Universal Healthcare law that was published yesterday (Monday June 30, 2018) ´re-establishing´ universal right to free healthcare for all residents in Spain.

The first transitory provision concerns those that have subscribed the “Convenio Especial” because they were not entitled to free healthcare in other ways.

There is a statement that the healthcare cover under the Convenio Especial will last till the end of the month in which this Decree has been published, so 31st July 2018. There is no mention of practicalities. No mentions as to whether you would now have to apply for free state healthcare or if there would be an automatic transfer.

As we are aware of the bureaucratic system, the latter is highly unlikely so we advise all those in this situation, to make an appointment with the INSS as soon as possible for clarification.  If there is a contact number on the contract signed when joining the convenio, you could try to call that to verify as well. All feedback would be appreciated.

Below is the the exact paragraph from the law which can be shown to the INSS.

Disposición transitoria primera. Convenio especial de prestación de asistencia sanitaria.

Los convenios especiales de prestación de asistencia sanitaria suscritos en aplicación de lo dispuesto en el artículo 3.3 de la Ley 16/2003, de 28 de mayo, por aquellas personas que tras la entrada en vigor de este real decreto-ley tengan derecho a recibir la asistencia sanitaria en el territorio español con cargo a fondos públicos, mantendrán su vigencia hasta el último día del mes natural en que entre en vigor este real decreto-ley.

The special agreements for the provision of healthcare signed in application of the provisions of article 3.3 of Law 16/2003, of May 28, by those persons who after the entry into force of this royal decree-law have the right to receive the Health care in Spanish territory charged to public funds, shall remain in effect until the last day of the calendar month in which this royal decree-law comes into force.

Please note: The information provided is based upon our understanding of current legislation. It is not legal advice but is provided freely to enable you to be properly informed. We recommend that if you are considering taking action, you should seek professional advice.

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