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Is your health insurance valid internationally? Here’s how to know

by on March 18, 2020 in featured item, Latest News, Lead Article, News you can use, Nuggets

Is your health insurance valid internationally? Here’s how to know

Do you have comprehensive health insurance that covers all your needs?

It might surprise you to know that while the insurance might cover you when you are within the borders, it might not cover you when you travel outside the country. In case you are wondering, health insurance often covers you while you are within the country.

If you are about to go, you need to know what happens to your medical bills. You can follow the procedure before.

Review the policy document

Usually, the only way to know if you really have insurance cover is to read the policy. If you bought the insurance through a salesperson, you could not be too sure what is contained in the policy document. Some will fortify the details to ensure that you have signed on the dotted line. They know that few people take time to pursue insurance documents properly.

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If you still have the policy document with you, examine it thoroughly. You may want to read coverage and exemptions areas. The devil is usually in this details section. You can also find other terms under the voidable clause. Certain health behaviors void some policies, leaving you exposed.

When reading the policy document, you may have to overcome the technical jargon often littered all over such documents. Although it is a consumer copy, most insurers fill up this paper with technical jargon. You might read and come out fooled. If you are not sure whether international health expenditures are covered, you may need to talk to the insurer.

Even if the language is straightforward, shoot your insurer with an email and do let them know that you will be using the response as an advisory from the company. An email will offer you proof that you indeed have medical cover internationally, or you do not have.

Ask the insurer

Calling the insurance provider can also shed light on your coverage status. Sometimes you might think you have one type of insurance only to realize that you are not. Some insurers also cover certain countries, one good example of that is the United Kingdom. If you have medical insurance in the UK, you might find that most insurers will cover your healthcare expenditure within the European Union. Calling the insurer is good because you can ask all the details about coverage, coverage status, services covered, the amount covered, and such information.

You may also need to ask about medical evacuation, emergency treatment, and such services. Though some insurers will cover your immediate health needs, they may refuse to cover evacuation because they don’t deem it medical.

Furthermore, medical evacuations are usually expensive and can be considered as elective by many insurers. Make sure you ask all about it because not every insurer will happily foot these bills.

Preexisting conditions are also another thorny issue when it comes to coverage. Your insurer could stealthily exclude pre-existing conditions from the cover. Some of them claim that people with pre-existing conditions should not exert themselves through travel.

Some even give hilarious excuses on why they cannot cover international health insurance for these conditions. Make sure you get an explicit confirmation that you are covered.


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