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Seeking advice, medication provision in France?

Seeking advice, medication provision in France?

Old Oct 2nd 2019, 10:18 am
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Default Seeking advice, medication provision in France?

Hello,

I am am new to the forum, I looking for advice please.

Ok a little background.
I am in my early 50’s - retired and receiving a private pension. (Early retirement due to health reasons)
My wife owns and runs her own business, but wants to take a step back and have a more hands off approach to her business.

The dream- well goal, is to hopefully move to a S.W. France, I suffer from a very specific arthritis condition which I receive specialist medication in the U.K. I receive this on the NHS but it costs circa 20k a year for my treatment.
I suffer a lot more during the cold months in the U.K. so the thought is that moving to a warmer climate will help, not to mention we want to have a slower pace of life at this stage in our life.

So the issue being, My medication and costs, would anyone know the likelihood of the French system providing specific medication if we moved to France? I think I probably already know the likely answer! But wanted to hear members advice.

I was then thinking if I need to remain in the U.K. system because of my requirements what if any are the options for still being able to live in France? I guess that then comes down to the no more than 90 days in any 180 day period? - just thinking if a holiday home basis would be viable or even worthwhile for us as we would still need a property in the U.K. which would then severely limit affordability for a nice property in France.

I look forward to members views and advice.
Many thanks.
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Old Oct 2nd 2019, 11:17 am
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Default Re: Seeking advice, medication provision in France?

Firstly to join the French health system without an S1 you will need to wait for 3 months before you can join the French health system However are you getting any benefits for your health condition that can be described as exportable? If so you can get an S1
Secondly you will obviously need to see a Doctor here who may have different ideas about your treatment and indeed there are many drugs available in the EU that the Uk will not allow to be prescribed If you have a long term chronic condition all your costs for that condition are borne by the state
In respect of what the weather is like in the SW of France hopefully another member will be able to give first hand advice
Lastly visiting France for a long period of time will not necessarily make you tax resident there are other factors involved
However all of this will be dependent on what is happening with Brexit
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Old Oct 2nd 2019, 12:14 pm
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Default Re: Seeking advice, medication provision in France?

Hi Tomad
Welcome to the french forum.
Sorry, I don't have first-hand experience of your situation.
Your healthcare could be a problem on several levels.
I assume that you currently receive a "biologicals" treatment (injections?) which are delivered to you monthly??
The French healthcare system only covers you for 70% of the treatment costs unless the condition is considered to be an ALD = chronic condition when it will cover 100% of the cost.
You would have to establish that your treatment is available and is covered.
Once registered with the French healthcare system you would need (strongly recommended) to have a top-up mutual insurance to cover the 30% of treatment which is not covered by the State.
I would suggest that you perhaps try a winter break for several months in France which would allow you to see if your proposal would work for you.
You could make enquiries about your medical situation and treatment.

France can also be cold in winter.

The second issue could be your wife's business.
She would not be allowed to operate her business in France ( e.g. telephone or computer) without being registered as a business in France.
There are options available in certain conditions but you would need professional advice.
You pay tax in France per household and not individually.

As LVC has said, tax-residency is complex and time spent in France is not the only parameter.
As an EU citizen, you are entitled to live in France as long as you can support yourself and are not a drain on the french system.
As an ex-EU citizen - post Brexit - God knows what conditions there will be.
Good luck
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Old Oct 2nd 2019, 4:44 pm
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Default Re: Seeking advice, medication provision in France?

My tuppence worth to add to the good advice already given:
Originally Posted by Tomad View Post
I suffer a lot more during the cold months in the U.K. so the thought is that moving to a warmer climate will help, not to mention we want to have a slower pace of life at this stage in our life.


It has been said already but worth repeating - the regions of France that you probably associate with being warm in summer, tend to get far colder than any part of the UK during winter.

Originally Posted by Tomad View Post
I was then thinking if I need to remain in the U.K. system because of my requirements what if any are the options for still being able to live in France?
Bear in mind that if the UK no longer provides EHIC cover after Brexit, you will get no state reimbursement of any medical costs you may incur whilst in France as a visitor.

More generally I don't see how trying to live between the two countries is going to work if/when Brits lose freedom of movement. Cherrypicking the best of both worlds was tempting of course but IMHO it was never a great idea because there was always the risk of falling between the two stools. Better to make up your mind where you want to live, make the commitment, pay your dues in that country and let it provide for you, that way there is no argument about which country is responsible for you..
"Free" healthcare is one of the things that Brits tended not to appreciate the value of until they lost it. It does need to be taken into the equation by Brits weighing up the pros and cons of moving abroad.


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Old Oct 16th 2019, 9:46 am
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Default Re: Seeking advice, medication provision in France?

Thank you for the input, sorry for such a long delay in response, but unfortunately due to an illness in the family things have been chaotic to say the least!

Cyrian: Yes I receive biologics injections for Non-RaSpa, I suffer from another long standing auto-immune condition linked to my bowel. The joys of an over active immune system!

We are heading out to SW France at the end of October just for a weeks taster and fact finding mission. We are both happy at the prospect of a total move if it feasible and financially viable, as pointed out my wife’s business which she wants to step away from but ideally have a peppercorn income may well be a problem from a tax perspective. Her business already has management in place who can run it for her if required, but obviously we see that she would still be effectively seen as running it. This will be an area where we will seek professional advice.

Thank you for the heads up about the weather, I have more of an issue with the damp and the rain, the cold is not a problem and the heat positively helps me, again fact finding trips in the winter should give an insight into the climate and if preferable to the soggy British winter, the seasons here seem to be less pronounced, definitely milder and wetter than say 20-30 yrs ago.

thanks again for your thoughts.
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Old Oct 16th 2019, 11:22 am
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Default Re: Seeking advice, medication provision in France?

@Tomad,
Please report back eventually on your trip, findings and future thoughts, as unfortunately most new posters here tend to 'disappear into the ether' after receiving advise.
Your findings could well be helpful for others in a similar position wondering about a move to France. Good luck!
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Old Oct 16th 2019, 6:02 pm
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Default Re: Seeking advice, medication provision in France?

Originally Posted by Tomad View Post
the seasons here seem to be less pronounced, definitely milder and wetter than say 20-30 yrs ago.
I think this is a global issue. Certainly not confined to the UK.
My impression is that France tends to be more extreme in all directions in the UK - the UK gets soggy, France floods. Last year my town in the grand ouest flooded for the first time in 35 years. What fun that was, thigh deep muddy water in my living room.
This was Mayenne just two days ago https://www.lexpress.fr/actualite/so...e_2103435.html
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Old Oct 16th 2019, 6:16 pm
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Default Re: Seeking advice, medication provision in France?

Originally Posted by EuroTrash View Post
I think this is a global issue. Certainly not confined to the UK.
My impression is that France tends to be more extreme in all directions in the UK - the UK gets soggy, France floods. Last year my town in the grand ouest flooded for the first time in 35 years. What fun that was, thigh deep muddy water in my living room.
This was Mayenne just two days ago https://www.lexpress.fr/actualite/so...e_2103435.html
You're right, Many parts of France have climates that are more "continental" i.e. further from seas and oceans than most of the UK. Hotter summers, but colder winters.

I'm glad I did O-level geography.
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Old Oct 17th 2019, 9:17 am
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Default Re: Seeking advice, medication provision in France?

Originally Posted by EuroTrash View Post
I think this is a global issue. Certainly not confined to the UK.
My impression is that France tends to be more extreme in all directions in the UK - the UK gets soggy, France floods. Last year my town in the grand ouest flooded for the first time in 35 years. What fun that was, thigh deep muddy water in my living room.
This was Mayenne just two days ago https://www.lexpress.fr/actualite/so...e_2103435.html
This is certainly true in the Hérault. The OP might appreciate the blisteringly hot, dry summers, but less so the cold, damp autumns/winters. After a few days of "normal" rain here, the Météo has announced an "épisode méditerranéen" soon, i.e. torrential rain and possible flooding.
The "S.W." covers a large area, but it has all been wet these last few days, too....
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Old Oct 17th 2019, 3:21 pm
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Default Re: Seeking advice, medication provision in France?

Here is rural Vaucluse the temperature can vary for +40 to -15. However when it is very cold it is usually dry and bright, rarely dull and damp and the light is almost always superb - why do you think so many artists made their home here.? It definitely been hotter in the last few summers and not so cold and possibly wetter in the winter. But then that seems to be par for the course.everywhere. Of course we also have the Mistral which is an excellent excuse for murdering your spouse. The older houses are built to withstand everything the weather throws at them. I'm not too sure if some of the breeze block boxes being built around and about will be so adaptable.

I do hope you find somewhere that suits you and your health. Good luck.
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Old Oct 18th 2019, 9:21 am
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Default Re: Seeking advice, medication provision in France?

Originally Posted by grannybunz View Post
Here is rural Vaucluse the temperature can vary for +40 to -15. However when it is very cold it is usually dry and bright, rarely dull and damp and the light is almost always superb - why do you think so many artists made their home here.? It definitely been hotter in the last few summers and not so cold and possibly wetter in the winter. But then that seems to be par for the course.everywhere. Of course we also have the Mistral which is an excellent excuse for murdering your spouse. The older houses are built to withstand everything the weather throws at them. I'm not too sure if some of the breeze block boxes being built around and about will be so adaptable.

I do hope you find somewhere that suits you and your health. Good luck.
GrannyB, your post made me smile.
Three years ago we were visiting the area - Aix en Provence, and although we didn't experience a 'bad' mistral, it was certainly too windy for me, and the same afternoon I went down with a migraine, which has happened in the past when I've been in a draught. The following day was the same, so we cut short our visit there and drove on elsewhere for a few hours away. Smiling again at your comment, Mme TP fortunately came home unscathed, despite my condition!
Some wonderful scenery in the region, but certainly not an area where I could live for the above reason. I'm certain more than a few Brits have property in PACA or Languedoc, purchased from a brochure or a non-windy visit, and have learnt to regret it, and detest the Mistral.
I recall in my bachelor days, a stop-off in Cap d'Agde for a spot of bathing. Within an hour the wind got up, and was so bad folks were retreating for cover to protect their sandwiches, packed lunches etc. Always preferred my ice cream cones topped with sprinkles, and certainly not the wind-swept, sandy version as it became that day. I almost needed medication myself after that!

Last edited by Tweedpipe; Oct 18th 2019 at 9:24 am.
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Old Oct 18th 2019, 10:07 am
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Default Re: Seeking advice, medication provision in France?

Originally Posted by Tweedpipe View Post
GrannyB, your post made me smile.
Three years ago we were visiting the area - Aix en Provence, and although we didn't experience a 'bad' mistral, it was certainly too windy for me, and the same afternoon I went down with a migraine, which has happened in the past when I've been in a draught. The following day was the same, so we cut short our visit there and drove on elsewhere for a few hours away. Smiling again at your comment, Mme TP fortunately came home unscathed, despite my condition!
Some wonderful scenery in the region, but certainly not an area where I could live for the above reason. I'm certain more than a few Brits have property in PACA or Languedoc, purchased from a brochure or a non-windy visit, and have learnt to regret it, and detest the Mistral.
I recall in my bachelor days, a stop-off in Cap d'Agde for a spot of bathing. Within an hour the wind got up, and was so bad folks were retreating for cover to protect their sandwiches, packed lunches etc. Always preferred my ice cream cones topped with sprinkles, and certainly not the wind-swept, sandy version as it became that day. I almost needed medication myself after that!
I forgot to mention the Tramontane which is often gale-force down the Aude and along the Languedoc plain! Like you, Swiss friends are affected in the same way as by the Föhn, but it simply makes me irritated.....
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Old Oct 19th 2019, 8:55 am
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Default Re: Seeking advice, medication provision in France?

Hi Tomad
I had another thought regarding your "biologics" treatment.
These products suppress your immune system and leave you open to additional risk of infection and damage.
I had a friend who was a professional sportsman and used one of these products for his arthritis.
He developed a melanoma (skin cancer) due (I suspect) to his extended periods outdoors and my opinion is that his reduced immune system left him more vulnerable.
He died age 50.
I also have another friend on this treatment and he had a cancerous lesion removed from his nose.
He now wears a wide-brimmed hat and uses factor 50 sunscreen.
I think that you should investigate the effects of UV while using your treatment and ask your GP and/or consultant for their opinion.
The treatment also leaves you more vulnerable to general infections so the availability of GP and hospital services should be a consideration.
HTH
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