At present, Europeans already enjoy the right to be treated in another EU country and reimbursed by the health insurance at home when they are on a trip or on a short stay to another member state. What is not allowed is to schedule an operation from one's home country in another EU country, except with their doctor's approval. This will change soon.

EU citizens will soon be able to seek medical treatment abroad and get reimbursed, provided the cost of the treatment is similar to what could be expected in the home country.

The new system will give patients greater freedom in choosing where they get hospitalised. It will also permit to skip queues in your home country, a problem that concern maybe people in Britain, where hospitals are often overcrowded.

A Belgian could also easily cross the border to the Netherlands, France or Germany. The region of Lille, France's 3rd biggest city, had already signed an agreement with the adjacent Belgian cities of Tournai and Kortrijk allowing emergency services to work across the border without any extra paperwork involved for the patients.

The new healthcare plan also aims at showing that the EU can tackle issues in direct concern with ordinary citizens' concerns.

More information here :

EuroActiv : Cross-border healthcare demands EU response

BBC News :EU plans cross-border healthcare