The British Embassy in Madrid on Tuesday encouraged all British residents in Spain who are currently eligible for a UK-issued EHIC European health insurance card to apply for a new one before the end of the year.
Regardless of their expiry date, EHIC cards which have been issued until now may not be valid from 1 January 2021, the embassy warns.
Residents in Spain who have their healthcare funded by the UK (people with a registered S1 form receiving a UK pension or benefit, UK students studying in Spain etc.) are advised to apply for the new card which will guarantee their entitlement to EHIC cover when travelling to other EU countries.
The new card, which has a different design to the current one, will demonstrate the holder's continued healthcare entitlements in other EU countries after the end of the transition period under the Withdrawal Agreement for the UK's departure from the European Union on 31 December 2020.
Applications for the new EHIC card can be processed here.
Healthcare rights of British citizens living in Spain before 31 December will remain the same for as long as they remain resident in this country.
The embassy has said it strongly encourages anyone who hasn't yet registered for healthcare to do so.
The UK-issued EHIC card is not valid for use by residents in Spain for healthcare in Spain, except for students and posted workers.