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Co-payment scheme for Spanish prescriptions

Published 05/07/2012

Co-payment scheme for Spanish prescriptions

Arrangements for Spanish prescription charges are changing. In this article we consider what the implications might be for Spanish residents, both pensioners and non-pensioners, when they next need to purchase a prescription in Spain. 


From the 1st July a system of co-payment for prescriptions in Spain has been introduced. Everyone now has to make a contribution towards the cost of Spanish prescriptions according to their income. We can now give you more information on how this new system of co-payment is being put into practice.

The new co-payment system

The new system is being implemented in two stages:

Stage 1

From 1st July anyone given a prescription in Spain should notice that it will include the percentage of the cost that they have to pay. This income information will be taken from the annual resident tax declaration (IRPF). Anyone with an income greater than 18,000€ a year will have to pay half the cost of the medication. Those below this amount will pay up to 40%. 

Pensioners with an income of less than 18,000€ who have made a tax declaration will pay 10% with a maximum payment of 8 euros a month.  Pensioners with an income greater than 18.000€ will pay a maximum of 18€ a month. 

If you have not made an annual resident tax declaration in Spain there will be no indication on the prescription of how much you must pay. Instead, blanket charges will be made of 40% for non-pensioners with low incomes and 10% for pensioners. However, it is important to note that no income information means no cap on your monthly contribution. A good reason for making sure that your resident tax declaration is in place.

Stage 2

Longer term, the intention is that this rate of pay information will be incorporated into your Spanish SIP card. A chip inside it will link to your resident tax declaration. This information will be much more specific and it will be increasingly difficult to obtain a discount if you haven’t presented a tax return in Spain, even if it is a zero one.

We would all sooner prescriptions were free. However, drugs and medicines remain a substantial drain on the economy. The Spanish government is trying through this means testing, to ensure that the contributions people are asked to make are administered as fairly as possible. 

If you would like to make sure that your prescriptions charges accurately reflect your income and would like to make an annual resident tax declaration (IRPF) go to: http://www.abacoconnect.com/free-pack


Caroline Clinton

Caroline Clinton
Customer Care Department

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