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Giving birth outside the UK

If you want to give birth in an EU country or Switzerland, you'll need:

The Giving birth abroad application form covers you for maternity care and delivery only. The EHIC or GHIC is for any other state-provided healthcare treatment that you or your child may need in the EU or Switzerland.

Even if you plan to give birth in the UK and you're only going for a short trip abroad, you're advised to take a valid EHIC or GHIC with you. The card will provide cover for all medical treatment linked to the birth if the baby is born unexpectedly.

The EHIC or GHIC may not cover you for every situation. You should always take out comprehensive travel insurance when going overseas, both to EU and non-EU destinations. Check your insurance has the necessary healthcare cover or talk with your GP and insurer about how to get the right cover, and how this affects your travel.

Giving birth in Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein

You may be able to apply for funding to give birth abroad in Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein (as well as EU countries and Switzerland) if you’re:

  • an EU, Swiss, Norwegian, Icelandic or Liechtenstein national, and you’ve been living in the UK since before 1 January 2021
  • a UK State Pensioner or receiving some other ‘exportable benefits’, and you’ve been living in the EEA or Switzerland since before 1 January 2021
  • a "frontier worker" (someone who works in one state and lives in another), and you’ve been one since before 1 January 2021, for as long as you continue to be a frontier worker in the host state
  • a family member or dependant of one of the above

How to apply for funding for giving birth abroad

Download and fill in the Giving birth abroad application form, from the NHS Business Services Authority website.

Send it with a copy of your maternity certificate (MAT B1) and any other supporting documents, to Overseas Healthcare Services at the NHS Business Services Authority (NHSBSA).

Email your application to Email your documents as a PDF attachment. Do not email embedded documents.

Alternatively, you can post it to:

S2 Applications
Overseas Healthcare Services
Bridge House
152 Pilgrim Street
Newcastle upon Tyne

If you need help or have any questions about filling in this form, call the NHSBSA on +44 (0)191 218 1999, Monday to Friday 8am to 6pm.

An interpretation service can be provided over the phone if English is not your first language.

Page last reviewed: 28 April 2023
Next review due: 28 April 2026