After we learned that the UK (respectively the NHS) does not cover our birth costs we were speechless. Still the NHS called us in to meet in Oban at the maternity unit (Geburtshaus der Klinik) to talk things through. Caroline was very friendly and patient with us, but – first things first – she welcomed us with a big pile of papers for us to sign. To sign that we will pay for any treatment, just for their security.
We spoke with Charlot’s health insurance in Germany. They don't want to pay either. Charlot spoke to many people for many hours but did not get any helpful information. Nobody was responsible or did know about such a case and kept on saying: „so sorry about that“ but could not direct her to anyone else who might be in charge or knows anything about it. In fact they always tried to be helpful but somehow told us very different – also contradicting – things. Nothing we could use.
I did research the world wide web.
After hours I figured out, that the EU has some quite simple and good laws to make sure that EU patients are always insured. There is a system called „Europäische Krankenkassenkarte“, in short EHIC (European health insurance card). This is a EU- thing to make sure that a patient abroad will be insured – for emergency cases. And, as I read in many places, a birth (including all maternity issues) is regarded as an accident – at least in Charlot’s case, because she is not merely moving to Scotland to give birth there. She is moving to Scotland not because its so nice to give birth there but she is moving here because she wants to live and work in Scotland and be with the father of the child, who is also living and working here.
And in fact a person from Charlot’s health insurance actually confirmed that! (that the EHIC modality should work here). So we went to the NHS again. They denied that! A birth is 8i their eyes) a planned treatment and the NHS will not accept Charlot’s birth as „unplanned“ (an emergency), i.e. the EHIC does not work in this case. Of cause its not an “emergency”, but that is just a name of a categories for different laws to function. Charlot`s maternity issues have become an emergency because of the situation.
Did you get that? No? Well, its f***ing complicated.
So what shall we do? It’s a law, supposedly to protect women like Charlot in such situation, but in vain. If they say no, what can we do? Go to court? Involve a lawyer?
Is it worth to fight? To fight a mighty system?
(Dear reader: Please don’t panic, we are also quit calm! The above is written to contribute to your daily mix of entertainment (even though its not made up). It is a story. Its our story but also “a” sorry. Please take it as such. If you do get worried and if you do want to help, please contact us directly to get the latest development in the process which changes from day to day…
By the way, Charlot is well, and we still have 4 weeks until the due date :-)