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Covid-19. How much do you have to pay for a PCR test on our European neighbors?

PCR tests between 0 and 1 euro, whatever the context: the government and the President of the Republic Emmanuel Macron have repeatedly expressed their pride in the free testing of Covid-19 in France. A strategy that aims to put no barrier to the detection of the coronavirus.

Up to 300 euros in Sweden

But not all of our European neighbors are so well off. Beyond our borders, carrying out a simple PCR screening can be very expensive. The price climbs to 300 euros in Sweden, for example. Regarding the possible reimbursement of the test by social protection organizations, it is often only effective in the event of a medical prescription or proven symptoms. Thus, screenings carried out before traveling are generally chargeable.

MAP> The prices of PCR tests in Europe

Some countries have made the same choice as France and do not charge for PCR tests. Among them are Norway, Denmark, Montenegro, and Malta. A choice that will weigh later on the finances of social protection organizations. In France, with tests of 54 to 63 euros fully reimbursed, the Social Security deficit should reach 35 billion euros in 2021.

High prices … and less well detected contaminations?

About ten countries charge more than 100 euros from their inhabitants to carry out a PCR test. A price that goes up to 200 euros in Finland and even 300 in Sweden. Tariffs that perhaps aim to make people think before taking the risk of being contaminated. But some may also forgo the test for lack of money, even if they have symptoms.

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One thing is certain: the more expensive the test, the more dissuasive it will be to carry out a “just in case” one. A strategy that encourages limiting non-essential trips, but which increases the chances of detecting contamination.

Between these two extremes, there is a wide range of countries and cases. In some countries, only the so-called “comfort” tests are chargeable, when making a tourist trip, for example. It then costs 60 to 180 euros depending on the case and the country, for tests generally carried out in the private sector.

On the side of our direct neighbors, it takes 80 euros in Germany, more than 100 in Switzerland and more than 40 in Italy. In Spain, the bill can reach 160 euros, against 48.61 to 59.95 in Belgium and Luxembourg.

And the French abroad?

What about French people living abroad? Can they get tested for free? Everything will depend on your situation, the country you are going to, and possibly your complementary health insurance.

According to the health insurance website, a screening test (RT-PCR or antigen) is fully covered if it is done in a country of the European Union, the European Economic Area and Switzerland, on the basis of a fixed price of 50 euros. Reimbursement is direct in the event of symptoms or if you have a prescription, but it will only be done after your return to France if it is not “immediately necessary” or if you have forgotten your European insurance card. disease.

Outside the European Union or the European Economic Area, as in the United Kingdom, only tests “of a medical, urgent and unexpected nature will be covered up to 27% of the amount of the expenditure.

And if and only if you return the S3125 form for “care received abroad” to your health insurance fund, together with the necessary medical prescription. Your complementary health insurance can, depending on its conditions, supplement this reimbursement in certain cases.

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