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What is International Health Insurance? Should You Buy It?

By Chanel Rick - May 3,2022
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Just imagine this, 

After working in a company for a few years, you were offered the opportunity to visit their headquarters abroad to train or manage a department. While this arrangement may be contractual in nature, the duration of your stay could be for a year or more. Either way, you must be excited! You could explore new foreign local cuisine, visit tourist sites and enjoy a rich cultural experience. 

Aside from adjusting and assimilating into a new life, you need to evaluate the healthcare and medical facilities available for expatriates. While learning to balance your budget for a new country and lifestyle, avoid straining your finances with medical expenses. 

Also Read: Appealing a Health Insurance Claim Denial

International Health Insurance for Expats 

International health insurance was created to tackle the healthcare concerns of those who frequently travel abroad. Whether you’re an expat, an international citizen or a worker, this insurance will cover the expenses for common and series of health concerns. The more extensive plans include medical coverage for maternity, childbirth, rehabilitation, and cancer treatment. 

The quality of healthcare services available varies amongst different countries, especially in the first and third world. Furthermore, the stark difference is evident when you see the final bill. You may have noticed that certain first-world nations charge higher medical fees. With international health insurance, secure yourself and your family medically and financially for any healthcare crisis. 

When purchasing international health insurance, many factors play a role in calculating your premium, much like any other insurance policy. Some additional factors included are: 

● Your age 

● Your medical history 

● The number of individuals covered 

● The extent of coverage required 

● Deductibles 

● The countries covered under the policy

Features of International Health Insurance 

If you’re still unsure about whether international health insurance is worth purchasing, check out these incredible features they come along with. It could easily make a world of difference during your stay abroad. 

●      Receive Flexi-Coverage: You can avail medical treatment for the most inexpensive procedures, or those that require private care – the healthcare needs of all individuals  

●      Hospitalisation Coverage: Such insurance policies cover sudden hospitalisation needs since most expats or travellers don’t have the resources to sustain such conditions

●      Pre-Existing Illnesses: It offers coverage for heart conditions, diabetes and other chronic diseases that may require urgent treatment 

●      Medical Transport Expenses: Avail facilities like ambulances or rescue helicopters for a medical evacuation – these services are expensive for non-citizens 

●      Pre-and Post-Operation Care: This includes all the expenses for surgery, as well as anaesthetics 

●      Out-Patient Care: The policy will cover the cost of hospital stays for less than one day, usually for patients requiring medical observation 

These features of international health insurance make it a crucial part of travel to foreign countries. Expats can use the financial support of the policy to reduce the burden of shouldering medical expenses by themselves.

Tips for Purchasing International Health Insurance 

There’s no denying it the benefits of owning international health insurance are immense. Before you go and browse the different policies available, bear the following factors in mind. 

  1. Always inquire about the premium payment interval, whether it’s on a monthly, quarterly or annual basis
  2. Some international health insurance policies have a waiting period of 30-45 days – understand the details of the waiting period beforehand! 
  3. Opt for insurances that allow you to make multiple claims in a year, with an adequate coverage amount for surgeries 
  4. Find out whether your policy contains any deductibles; however, the lower the deductible, the higher premiums you pay 
  5. Get a list of the inclusions and exclusions of your policy to avoid any unpleasant surprises during a medical emergency 
  6. Thoroughly understand the extent of the coverage across continents and counters – which regions and cities fall under the insurance?
  7. Compile a list of the documents required while making an international health insurance claim
  8. Lastly, opt for an insurance that does not have a complex claim process 

 While enjoying the thrilling life and routine of an expat, don’t forget to secure the needs of you and your dependents. International health insurance ensures a smooth sail with no hassle for availing of medical or financial support. 

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