HSE HealthCare schemes

Medical Cards

Medical Cards allow you to access medical services, prescription medicines and hospital care for free. If you have a medical card, you will receive your medication for free. There is a prescription charge of €2 for each item, up to a maximum of €20 per month.

You can apply for a medical card or get more information from the HSE here. Receiving a medical card is dependant on your circumstances.


GP Cards

If you do not qualify for a medical card, you also have the option to apply for a GP Card. This card gives you free visits to see your GP, however you will have to pay for your medication. Eligibility for a GP card is also dependant on your circumstances. Find out more about the GP Card here.


Long Term Illness Scheme

Long Term Illness Scheme allows you to get some drugs, medicines and approved appliances for free from your pharmacy. Unlike the above schemes, this is not means tested. Find out more information on diseases, disabilities and medications covered on this scheme here.


European Health Insurance Card (EHIC)

The European Health Insurance Card allows you to receive healthcare services in another EU country free of charge, or at a reduced cost. This will only cover you if you are on a holiday or a short term stay. You will need a European Health Insurance Card for each member of your family. Find out more information about the EHIC here.


Dental Treatment

Those on a medical card are also covered for certain dental treatment. Dental examination, 2 fillings a year and tooth extraction are all covered under your medical card. Certain procedures however will need approval from the HSE such as dentures. Find out more information about the dental treatment covered under your medical card here.


Drugs Payment Scheme

The Drugs Payment Scheme ensures that a family or individual will pay no more than €134/month on approved medication and medical equipment. This is not a means tested scheme, so if you pay more than this amount a month, you should apply for this scheme. Find out more about the Drugs Payment Scheme here.