The European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) was introduced across the EU in 2004. Holding this card allows you access to the health services in any country in the EU (also in Switzerland , Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway) if you are visiting that country temporarily.
If you become ill or injured on holidays within the participating countries, you can present your EHIC card at any public treatment centre. You will be entitled to the same public health care as any resident in that country. As health services vary from country to country, you should take out private health insurance as a precautionary measure when travelling.
All Irish residents are entitled to apply for this card.
Visit http://www.ehic.ie/ to apply of for more information.