How do i pay a small hospital bill from France?
October 16, 2009 4:50 AM   Subscribe

How do i pay a small hospital bill from France?

GF and I (UK residents) had a holiday in France earlier this year during which she broke her head a bit. We went to the hospital to check it wasn't serious (it wasn't), and filled in the EHIC form and thought no more of it. The hospital didn't ask for money and didn't look like it was really set up for the handling of money either.

Three months later, we receive a bill for 17 EUR, which seems to be 30% of the actual fee. I guess the EHIC has covered the other 70%. It's attached to one of those normal bill payment tear off things, with a note saying something like "For ways to pay, please see over". Unfortunately, the bill seems to be a photocopy or something because there's nothing on the other side.

So, firstly, what are those ways to pay, that a French hospital would normally accept? And secondly, are any of those feasible from abroad? I see the "Eurocheque" doesn't exist anymore, and I would rather not have to pay Western Union or similar 100% of the bill amount to get this done.

If it's at all useful, I will be in Berlin for a weekend next month, so perhaps there is some kind of euro-denomination cheque I could get hold of there ?
posted by doiheartwentyone to Work & Money (5 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
If the bill thing contains an IBAN and BIC, then ask your bank to make an transfer in euros to that account number. This may cost you more than the €17 though.

If not, contact the hospital and ask for that information.

IBAN info from natwest, who will charge a tenner for a Euro transfer

In the euro-zone it cost the same to make a transfer to an account in another euro-country as it does to one in your home country, which is normally nothing, so if you have a euro-zone friend you can trust, ask them to make the transfer... (Damn UK banks are milking the fees...)
posted by nielm at 5:15 AM on October 16, 2009

Thanks nielm!
Yes theres an IBAN and BIC on the chit.

Good tip about the transfer fees as well.
I'll try and get my German colleague to do it in that case and pay him when he's in the office.
posted by doiheartwentyone at 5:21 AM on October 16, 2009

I guess I should also phone the hospital and tell them someone else will be paying for me. There's not an obvious "account number" and there are several numbers that might be a bill reference.
posted by doiheartwentyone at 5:23 AM on October 16, 2009

I know we're only talking €17 here, but this is the page you want on the payment and UK refund process for treatment in France.

It also seems to imply that you can get your €17 back from the UK.
posted by vacapinta at 5:38 AM on October 16, 2009

On a travel website, I read that an American with a French hospital bill contacted the French embassy and through them was able to charge the bill to their credit card in US dollars.
posted by sevenstars at 6:53 AM on October 16, 2009

« Older Using a Japanese phone stateside?   |   Self-help but I need your help - what should I... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.