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On 1st January 2016, a new social system has come into play in France to replace the CPAM , known as PUMA (protection Universelle Maladie )

Your personal health cover is also very important and I will help you understand the social security system (PUMA) in France, write letters on your behalf or make phone calls and apply for your ‘Carte Vitale.’ I also work in collaboration with Top up health insurers if you wish to obtain complementary health cover.

Carte VitaleThe Carte Vitale is the national insurance card issued to anyone eligible aged 16 and over.

It gives evidence that you have the right to French health insurance.

It contains all the necessary information for your doctor, pharmacy or health provider to refund your care directly.

The Carte Vitale should be handed over at every health appointment (doctor, clinic, hospital, pharmacy) that is equipped with a computer able to read it. The patient will generally receive reimbursement (the amount reimbursed will be in relation to your situation) for treatment or medicines directly into their bank account within five days.

If you have a complementary top up insurance, you will generally receive the total reimbursement due directly via your top up health insurer.

A Carte Vitale has to be updated regularily (mise à jour) by inserting it into the special machine at your local town hall of pharmacy.

A person without a Carte Vitale eligible for state health insurance will receive a feuille de soins (a brown receipt form) from the doctor, pharmacist or hospital staff. This is recognised by PUMA as a legitimate medical payment. It should be posted to PUMA for reimbursement after completion of the relevant details by yourself and your doctor.

The procedure to obtain your carte vitale can be complicated and which administration to apply to depends upon your personal and professional situation in France. It is vital that all forms are completed correctly otherwise it can take a very long time to receive your carte vitale.

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