Recycle Social Security Numbers

e-card and European health insurance card


The e-card is a chip card which is issued to all insured persons and their relatives and which, among other things, proves health insurance coverage. It is a key card that enables access to the e-card system with its many applications and to the ELGA electronic health record (→ No medical data is stored on the e-card itself.

The cardholder's name, title and social security number as well as the card sequence number are printed on the front of the e-card. In addition, the number of the e-cardServiceline (050 124 3311) and the telephone health advice: "If it hurts" (1450) are located on the card surface. The letters "SV" for "social security" are also applied in Braille on the card body. The European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) is on the back of the e-card.


Since January 1, 2020, a photo must be permanently affixed to newly issued or exchanged e-cards. This generally applies from the 14th birthday. As a rule, photos from registers such as Austrian passports, ID cards, credit card driving licenses or from the register of foreigners are used by the social security system. The e-cards will be automatically exchanged successively until the end of 2023.

More information on e-cards with photos can be found at

The legislator provides for a service fee for the e-card, which is collected by the insured person through the employer. The service fee for a calendar year is due on November 15th of the previous year. The service fee for 2022 is 12.70 euros and will be collected in November 2021. The service fee is slightly revalued annually. No service fee is charged for co-insured relatives.

At social vulnerability there is the possibility of a Application for exemption from the service fee collection to the respective insurance carrier.

The following are exempt from the service fee:

European Health Insurance Card

The European health insurance card (→ is affixed to the back of the e-card (→ Sozialversicherungs-Chipkarten Betriebs- und Errichtungsgesellschaft mbH) and replaces the care certificate E-111 for temporary stays (e.g. vacation trips) in EU member states ( →, EEA countries (→, Switzerland, North Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Bosnia-Herzegovina. In Montenegro, Serbia and Bosnia-Herzegovina, the EHIC must be presented to the relevant social security institution for the stay and exchanged for a valid certificate of entitlement.

If the European insurance card cannot be activated due to a lack of previous insurance periods - in such a case you will find stars in the text fields on the back of the e-card - a replacement certificate will be issued by your responsible insurance company as a provisional replacement for the health insurance card The existence of health insurance coverage in Austria applies.

Since the European health insurance card is initially only visually readable abroad, the period of validity is limited and depends, among other things, on the previous insurance periods that exist on the date of issue.

At Expiry of the period of validity on the European Health Insurance Card automatically a new e-card issued by the responsible insurance company.

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Last updated: February 10, 2021

Responsible for the content: umbrella organization of social insurance agencies