Women who have had a symphysiotomy
Medical cards are usually granted to children in foster care.
People aged 16–25, including students, who are financially independent of their parents may be entitled to a medical card if they pass the means test. If they are financially dependent on their parents they are normally only entitled to a medical card if their parents have one. A student getting Disability Allowance will generally be entitled to a medical card.
After your card is issued
If your circumstances change you must inform the HSE as you may no longer be eligible. For example, if your income or family circumstances change, you must inform the Client Registration Unit as soon as possible — see 'How to apply' below. Your card will be reviewed periodically.
The HSE will ask you periodically to confirm your circumstances. A review form is sent to you, which you must fill in and return to the Client Registration Unit. If you do not return your review form your application cannot be re-assessed and your card may not be re-issued.
You may continue to use your expired card while a review is taking place, as long as you continue to be involved in the review process. Your eligibility can be confirmed by any doctor or pharmacist or through the GP practice systems, or you can confirm it yourself online at medicalcard.ie.
Returning to work
If you are getting a social welfare payment for a year or more and return to work, you may be able to keep your medical card for up to 3 years. It is planned to change this in 2014 so that instead you will be entitled to retain a GP Visit Card without a means test when you return to work, rather than retaining a medical card.
If you move house
You can use your medical card for up to 3 months if you are living temporarily outside your Local Health Office area. In this case, you can attend any GP in the area participating in the medical card scheme. If you are going to be away longer than 3 months, you should apply to the Local Health Office of that area for a medical card. If you move to a different part of your own Local Health Office area, you can apply to change your doctor.
How to apply
If you have any questions before you send your application, you can phone Lo-call 1890 252 919, contact your Local Health Office, or email email@example.com.
You can apply online for a medical card on medicalcard.ie. This is the quickest method of obtaining the card. The completed form will be returned to you.
Alternatively, you can download a medical card application form: