Vaccination in Menorca

The vaccination procedure is not straightforward for everyone.

28-03-2021Gemma Andreu

A former National Health Service State Registered Nurse, and her husband moved to Mallorca last October and completed all their required paperwork, residency permits etc., but the only problem appeared to have been obtaining public health coverage in Mallorca. They were told that they had to have apparently been a resident for at least a year to be eligible - so at great cost they took out private health insurance for a year.

Then, a few weeks ago, she set about trying to obtain Covid vaccines for her and her husband and came up against a brick wall and, after having tried to talk to various authorities, turned to the Bulletin for help.

“I have just (with great difficulty) managed to speak to our health care insurer. The lady told me categorically that the vaccine is being done via public health and they have not been told of any involvement in the campaign. I asked her that if we didn’t have public health as we haven’t been here a year so weren’t allowed it, what was the situation for us (in effect, in limbo). She said she didn’t know and could not help. That it was a public health issue.

“I will try the PAC in Santa Ponsa tomorrow as a last resort,” she said after I gave her the best advice I could, considering that although the Bulletin is, to a certain extent, a public service, none of the staff are professionals in this field. I suggested going to her health centre armed with all of her paperwork and trying to resolve the matter face to face. “I went to the PAC myself, armed with every piece of paper I thought they would need. The lady in Santa Ponsa was really kind and made an appointment for us to go to administration on Friday, so we could be added to the waiting list.

“Basically, if you do not have a health card, EHIC, Cert of Padron, NIE, Passport and a SIP completed, it is extremely difficult. Tell people there is no point ringing any number, it is best to go in person.”

However, having appeared to have resolved the matter and secured a position on the list for a vaccine, there has been another twist in events.

Yesterday she said: “Just an update on our attempts to get on the list for a vaccine call. So, after turning up with a printed appointment on Friday, following a visit to show all documents (along with the email from you/your contact), I faced the same issues all over again.

“I showed the appointment slip and presented the same documents and the additional blue EHIC card she asked me to bring. She briefly looked at them then proceeded to tell me she could not process without the actual NIE card. This was the exact same woman who had given me the original appointment.

“I explained that the new NIE is now tied in with the Residencia, that due to bureaucratic delays we have been waiting for ours since October and that we have yet to receive it. I showed her the proof that it’s in process. At this she got cross and shook her head.

“It took a lot of (polite) argument on my part, with the help of Google Translate, to convince her that that was not what she told me last week, that she had simply asked for the addition of the EHIC at our appointment.

“All this was done at the normal reception desk, so unsure why we were given the appointment in the first place. I had to literally plead with her and ‘kill her with kindness’ ('many thanks for your kindness and patience' etc.) until she finally relented and photocopied everything, then issued a notification that we are now on the list.

“She wrote on the paper that we can only use the EHIC until 2/6/21. That after this date we can’t get the vaccine. I’m baffled as to what the EHIC has to do with getting a public health vaccine.

“I genuinely fear for the possibility that anyone who is not a Spanish citizen will ever actually be able to get the vaccine when their age group is called. I have never known so many anomalies for what should be a simple process. That, along with the unnecessary rudeness demonstrated both face to face and on the phone towards non-Spanish trying to simply get their name on a list to be called.

“I wonder if the Spanish Government is even aware of the lack of knowledge/information which has filtered down to local level about the correct rules and process My husband is disabled deaf, had cancer last year and is over 65, so it is concerning to me that people like him will be missed out. It won’t be through the lack of trying on my part.

“I have found the whole thing incredibly stressful, as I only speak a little Spanish and, for my little family, all communicating falls to me due to my husband's disability. There are lots of British expats here, yet there is absolutely no provision for phone contact or notices in English. At least in lots of other countries there are options for other languages.

“I get we are in Spain and it’s up to me to learn the language, but surely the Spanish Government could provide a little help, to make communication easier for both parties. I was literally shaking and anxious yesterday at this (so-called) appointment. Not good on behalf of the Spanish health care system.

“I just wanted you to know that what was promised, was changed yet again on the day in order to warn other readers.”

Comments

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Victor / Hace 6 months

It is a shame! We cannot get the Empadronamiento as we are living in short term Airbnbs and there is no chance to get in the system or to get vaccinated. Most countries are prioritising solutions to solve the health crises, in Spain the bureaucracy prevails.

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James / Hace 10 months

Tarjetas Sanitarias are not issued at Puntos de Attención Continuada's or health centres. If you're retired you should make a Cita Previa to go along to INSS with your S1 form, along with your Residencia and Empadronamiento (for Seguridad Social purpose) certificates, and reqiest an "inscrito" onto the Seguridad Social register. Subsequently you will be advised when you can, with fotos, collect your card from your local Centro Salud. You will be notified as to when the vaccinations are being rolled out to your section of the population. Simple....

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Peter / Hace 10 months

The problem here, like in so many cases, is the failure to speak the lanquage. Actually the process is very straightforward and entirely unambigious, but you've been to the wrong places with badly interpreted information, and had this result. If you will not learn Spanish, go to a Gestoria or other agent.

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James Healey / Hace 10 months

I know quite a few locals (Spanish nationals) of over the age of 70 and they tell me that their local PAC’s have no idea when they will be vaccinated nor is there a “list”. Apparently a lot depends on the supply chain and that they receive the right type of vaccine. I hope I am wrong but I can’t see you being vaccinated here, this year at least, without a TIE or Spanish NHS card.

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Tom / Hace 10 months

I feel for you. Faced with similar issues I just flew back to England to get both my Covid vaccinations (now completed). You are allowed out of quarantine for medical appointments or to leave the country, so it meant 2 quick trips 6 weeks apart for me.

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Joe / Hace 10 months

What she is basically, indirectly, saying to you is that if you want to be vaccinated, go back home.

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Tim / Hace 10 months

We have been resident for some time, have the various documents, padron, Spanish health cards etc. and have contributed into the local health for some time. By contrast a couple of weeks ago my wife was called and asked if she could be in Palma in 30 minutes for a vaccine - and the process was very smooth. No issues.

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Ted T. / Hace 10 months

I am going thru the same process. The following steps are necessary:

1. have a valid NIE

2. have a current registration document (empadronamiento) of the city you're living in.

3. obtain a Spanish social security number (if you do not have one) TA1 document thru: http://www.seg-social.es/wps/portal/wss/internet/Trabajadores/Afiliacion/10817/31190/572

4. go to a local Public medical center at your area with the social security number and get the Public Spanish health card. (Tarjeta Sanitaria)

5. than you will be able to get into the Spanish Public COVID-19 vaccination schedule.

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Marvin Martian / Hace 10 months

Welcome to Mallorca! Bureaucratic nightmare, all the time, in everything. Lovely place though.

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Mark / Hace 10 months

You wanted too live there don’t come running back to the Uk now it’s not going your way you will have plenty more problems the Spanish government are like dinosaurs no use to anyone

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