Transport costs in Austria
For transporting ill insured persons and dependants who are unable to walk, the WGKK takes over the transport costs when they have to see a doctor, need dental treatment or dentures and need to have aids or appliances fitted. The following has to be taken into consideration:
Costs are only borne or reimbursed for medically necessary transport to and from the nearest or nearest available place of treatment (in particular doctors, outpatient clinics, hospitals). In Vienna all places of treatment are deemed to be the nearest. The medical necessity of such a transport, whether it is a case of first aid and the degree of urgency all have to be attested by a doctor.
The decision which means of transport is medically necessary is made solely by the doctor. The patient’s wishes regarding a particular transport organisation cannot be taken into consideration.
Vacation in Austria
If an insured person falls ill or has an accident while on vacation in Austria, the transport costs to the nearest suitable hospital or the nearest suitable specialist are taken over. Costs of the transport home from the hospital to the ill person’s place of residence can only be borne in the amount of the (fictitious) costs of the transport from the place of treatment to the last place of stay (place of vacation).
Recovery costs of the mountain rescue service
Transport down from the mountain (rescue costs by sledge, rescue from the ski slope, mountain rescue) required as a result of an accident during sport or as a tourist cannot be paid for by the health insurance institution by law.
In this case, private insurance would have to be taken out.
Transport costs abroad
Transport costs abroad cannot be taken over. An exception is transport costs in EU and EEA states or contractual states if and when these states provide for taking over transport costs.
The transport costs of patients from abroad (including EU and contractual partner states) to their residence in Austria cannot be taken over. Neither is it possible to take over the costs from the border to their residence in Austria.
To ensure the remaining costs, often very high, do not have to be paid in full by the insured person, it is advisable to consider taking out private health insurance well before taking a trip abroad. Many travel businesses and the private insurers have a broad range of offers. Many credit-card companies already include insurance cover that also sometimes covers the costs of transport back to Austria if required.
Air transport costs
For air transport within Austria, the costs to the nearest suitable hospital are taken over if the state of the patient or the urgency make transport by road irresponsible. In addition, the medical necessity of air transport must be attested by a doctor and approved by the WGKK.
The amount of costs to be taken over depends on the tariffs established in the bylaws of the Austrian social insurance institutions and the WGKK. The costs of transferring patients home via air ambulance service after falling ill or having an accident abroad (including EU and contractual partner states), e.g. during vacation, cannot be taken over by the WGKK. It is thus advisable to take out private travel insurance.
Transport by ambulance
Two types of transport can be distinguished!
- Simple patient transport for patients who do not need attendance from a paramedic during transport and have to be transported lying down or sitting in a transport chair solely because they are not able to walk.
The contractual partners for simple patient transport:
GWS Krankenbeförderung GmbH, Haller & Felsinger GmbH und ÖHTB Fahrtendienst GmbH,
can be reached under the number
+43 1 488 58
of their common control centre.
- Qualified patient transport for persons who are not emergency patients and have to be transported lying down or sitting in a transport chair because they are not able to walk and either need attendance from a paramedic or some medical attention during transport.
The contractual partners for qualified patient transport:
Samariterbund Vienna, Telephone: +43 1 89 144
Vienna Red Cross, Telephone: +43 1 52 144
Johanniter-Unfallhilfe Austria, Telephone: +43 1 47 600
Grünes Kreuz – Walter Tögel, Telephone: +43 1 767 88 99
Sozial Medizinischer Dienst, Telephone: +43 1 310 50 50
Transport services under contract/transport by car
Insured persons or dependants who due to their illness or disability cannot use public transport in order to receive necessary treatment or examinations, also regarding dental treatment and dentures, but whose state does not require transport using an ambulance, can also be transported by a transport service under contract with the WGKK.
For this, an application for cost assumption for transport by a transport service under contract is required beforehand, which both the general practitioner and the treatment facility issues stating the appropriate medical reasons. After issuance, the required approval has to be received by the WGKK’s Medical Service (customer centre Wienerberg/ground floor) or at any branch either in person or by mail. This approved application is then valid for the stated number of transports for a duration of no longer than two months. On presentation of the approved application, the transports required can be made by one of our transport services under contract.
Cost contribution for insured persons
Making use of transport service under contract or a patient transport service is tied to a cost contribution by the insured person (dependant).
The cost contribution to be made per calendar year is limited to the amount of 72 times the currently valid prescription charge per insured person (dependant).
Depending on the type of transport, either EUR 6,10 (simple prescription charge) or EUR 12,20 (double prescription charge) has to be paid.
Patient transport/Sitting down - simple prescription charge
Simple patient transport/Lying down - double prescription charge
Ambulance transport - double prescription charge
Exemption from cost contribution
Die WGKK fully assumes the costs to be paid by the insured person or dependant if the patient
- is transported when receiving first aid
- is exempt from prescription charges
(exception: when a person is only exempt from prescription charges due to reaching the upper limit.)
- has not yet turned 15
- is transported to radiotherapy, chemotherapy or dialysis
The transport services under contract can be reached under the following number of their common control centre: +43 1 488 58
Transport services under contract with the WGKK
- ALOIS CZACH GmbH., Mietwagenunternehmen
1210 Vienna, Grellgasse 8/3
- HALLER & FELSINGER GmbH, Taxi- und Mietwagen
1220 Vienna, Franz-Reitlinger-Gasse 5
- Blaguss-Minibus-Service GmbH
1230 Vienna, Richard Strauss Straße 32
- ÖHTB-Fahrtendienst, Gemeinnützige GmbH
1110 Vienna, Kaiser-Ebersdorfer-Straße 69
- POKORNY GmbH, Taxi- und Mietwagenunternehmen
1140 Vienna, Kolbetergasse 1
- GWS GmbH, Krankenbeförderung
1230 Vienna, Perfektastr. 61, Obj. 1/Top 3
Cost reimbursement for taxis not under contract with the WGKK is only provided if the transport takes place in connection with first-aid or other urgent treatment. In all other cases reimbursement is not possible.
For patients who are very likely never to regain the ability to use public transport, we also offer the option of a permanent permit for using transport services under contract. For this, also a green transport order is required, which the GP or the treatment facility can issue with the appropriate justification. After approval by our Medical Service, this permit is valid until further notice.
The customer then receives a pass he or she has to present every time they use a transport service.
More information on permanent permits for using transport services under contract:
Telephone: +43 1 60 122-2840
Transports with a private car
If insured persons or dependants due to their inability to walk cannot use public transport, they are entitled to receive reimbursement for transport with their own car in the amount of half the rate of the official mileage allowance. The inability to walk must be attested by a doctor and approved by the Medical Service (customer centre Wienerberg/ground floor) of the WGKK (addresses).
More information on transport costs:
Transports: +43 1 601 22-2840
Reimbursing transport costs: +43 1 601 22-2840
Which transport costs are not taken over?
The WGKK does not take over costs e.g. for transport to and from:
- places of treatment for which the health fund does not bear the treatment costs
- a blood bank for autohaemotherapy
- a health facility of Magistratsabteilung 15
- an assessment facility visited on the request of a pension insurance institution
- our administrative building 10., Wienerbergstraße 15–19, when visited for the purpose of getting approval
- to the customer centres/district offices visited on the request of a WGKK doctor
- a baby being breastfed while staying in hospital
- a hospital while staying there (e.g. visits by car)
- a general practitioner, unless consulted for infusion therapy with an approved application.
Patient transports do not represent a separate benefit provided by the health fund.
They are only paid for if also the treatment the transport is used for is approved and paid for, or its costs reimbursed, by the WGKK.
Transport cost reimbursement – New rules from 1 January, 2018
The WGKK takes over the transport costs for persons able to walk under the following conditions:
- Travel to receive medical treatment or equivalent services at the nearest suitable contractual partner of WGKK or the nearest contractual hospital (exceptions only possible when deemed medically necessary by a doctor).
This includes trips for the purposes of dental treatment/dentures, medical check-ups or treatment with therapists under contract with the fund.
- The distance between the place of treatment and the place of residence is more than 40 kilometres. For shorter distances within the area of a town or city, there is no transport cost reimbursement.
- Transport costs can only be reimbursed for persons exempt from prescription charges (exemption because of reaching the upper limit for prescription charges = REGO does not count). Exception: for persons travelling to dialysis, chemo or radiotherapy, or an examination by a head physician, transport cost reimbursement is possible even without exemption from prescription charges. The requirement of a distance of more than 40 km is still valid.
- Transport costs are reimbursed for persons accompanying children under the age of 15 as well as for persons who require an accompanying person because of their mental or physical state (confirmation by a doctor is required).
For trips to a non-accredited doctor, therapist, etc., only those transport costs are reimbursed that the WGKK would have reimbursed in the case of a visit at the nearest contractual partner or primary care facility.
Amount of transport cost reimbursement:
- Distance one-way of up to 40 km: No transport cost reimbursement
- Distance one-way of more than 40 km up to 60 km: flat rate EUR 6.00/one-way trip or EUR 9.00/ one-way trip with an accompanying person
- Distance one-way of more than 60 km: the rate per kilometre is EUR 0.12 or EUR 0.18 with an accompanying person
The flat rate / rate per kilometre is used irrespective of the means of transport used.
Applying for transport cost reimbursement:
Confirmation of treatment issued by the respective facility (doctor, hospital, etc.) has to be sent to the WGKK/benefits department together with a bank account number.
More detailed information on transport costs and reimbursement:
Telephone: +43 1 601 22-2840