Medical insurance is just like any other type of insurance. It is designed to cover some unforeseen costs that people may encounter in their lives. Medical conditions are one of the crucial things that can cause you, or someone else, to incur expenses.
What is medical insurance?
Medical insurance, short for health insurance, is a type of insurance that people can take out to help pay for the cost of medical treatment. It does not cover every single thing, so it’s best to find out what your policy covers before you travel. Although these policies will vary between providers and countries, you should be well informed on how much coverage you have for international travel.
What does medical insurance cover?
As stated, medical insurance varies between different providers and countries; you should be clear on what your policy covers before traveling. If you plan to visit multiple destinations, Atlas travel insurance can cover you for all of your trips.
The big question is, does my Medical Insurance Cover International Travel?
The answer is no. Unfortunately, medical insurance does not cover international travel for two fundamental reasons:
There is no such thing as having one particular “Medical Insurance” policy. Each person has a different plan depending on their employer and the state they live in. The only way to get around this would be to have multiple policies from multiple companies, which would incur hundreds of dollars in costs.
The countries you travel to have different policies than the U.S. (and most likely your current country). It means that even if you were covered there, it still would not cover illnesses or accidents that occurred upon returning home because you changed locations and countries. For this reason, people usually buy additional insurance when traveling abroad.
There is no way around it. Medical Insurance does not cover international travel and must be purchased separately before or during your trip.
Generally speaking, medical costs overseas are higher than in the United States – both for doctor visits and hospital stays. It is why many health insurance plans do not cover foreign travel.
Medical Insurance covers are split into different categories, and these are the main ones that people think about when considering medical insurance:
1. Hospital Stays
Some policies will cover you for any stay in the hospital. Others pay a set amount or percentage towards this cost, so it is essential to determine what your plan covers.
2. Doctor Visits
Some policies will cover you for any doctor visits. Others do not cover this unless it is an emergency (in which case you would need emergency medical insurance, not travel medical insurance).
3. Emergency Medical Transportation
Many plans will pay for the transportation back to the United States if you are sick or injured.
4. Prescription Medication
Some plans will cover the cost of any medication needed for your trip. Others have a set amount they pay towards medications, so it is crucial to determine what your plan covers.
5. Dental Treatment
Most policies do not cover dental care, but some may include a small coverage fee or percentage towards this cost.
6. Emergency & Evacuation
Some plans will pay for the transportation back to the United States if you are sick or injured. Others spend a set amount towards this cost per day depending on your destination, so it is crucial to determine what your plan covers.
Although most insurance companies will deny claims during international travel, there are some exceptions to this rule. The following guidelines outline the essential criteria for medically necessary treatment overseas:
- The patient must have a serious medical need that cannot be treated domestically * urgent care is required to improve the health of the patient
- The treatment cannot be postponed until their return to the United States.
- The traveler’s medical insurance policy will not reimburse the cost of the treatment.
Unfortunately, this means that even if you have a medical emergency while abroad, your plan may still deny any claims – so it is crucial to find out what your plan covers before traveling. Medical Insurance does not cover international travel and must be purchased separately before or during your trip.
When it comes to international travel safety, there are a few things that can help you prepare for your trip:
- Ensure your passport is valid and you have any necessary visas to enter the country.
- Check which immunizations or medications will be required for travel into another part of the world.
- Find out what kinds of natural disasters may occur in the region you’ll be visiting so you have the proper precautions in place.
- Keep a list of phone numbers for emergency services at your destination.
Although there are ways to get around the medical insurance issue, you do not want to risk it if you plan to travel abroad, especially for a longer period. The cost of additional medical insurance can be surprisingly cheap, though, so it may be worth looking into, even if you only plan on staying abroad for a few weeks.