Here are some things you need to know about Universal Healthcare when traveling overseas
If you send out short-term workers or are going overseas yourself this spring or summer, they/you may be at risk overseas even with ACA-compatible domestic medical insurance.
FACT: Americans traveling overseas have on average a 1-in-5 chance of getting injured or sick during service projects, short-term trips or while on vacation overseas.
FACT: Most U.S. domestic health insurance coverage of short-termers, students or tourists going overseas will not protect them or pay claims unless it is a life-or-death situation (Some will not pay out-of-network claims even if it is life-or-death).
FACT: Universal Health Care (ACA-compatible insurance) hasn’t changed anything regarding Americans when they travel overseas, and surely will not cover medical or political evacuation.
FACT: For about a $1 a day, ‘short-term travel insurance,’ or ‘overseas health insurance’ is still the best way to protect those you love and Good Neighbor Insurance is one of the most recognized brokers of group insurance or individual policies for volunteers, missionaries, non-profit groups overseas, tourists and business people worldwide.
Some Travel Insurance Options from Good Neighbor Insurance:
- Short-term trips overseas
- Insurance for Short-term Teams
- Frequent travel/ Affordable annual multi-trip plans
- Medical Evacuation Insurance
- Trip Cancellation Insurance
- Pre-existing Condition Coverage
- Long-Term Overseas Medical Coverage
- Home Leave or Furlough Coverage
One of the almost universal myths about ‘Universal health care and medical insurance’ is that it is universal. That it will cover you anywhere, anytime. That is simply not true once you leave the USA or your network.
Protect those you love – Make sure your team or young adult or volunteers don’t get on a plane unless they are protected.
“Chances are that outside the U.S., your health insurance card will just be a useless piece of plastic.” according to CNN. “If you see a doctor or visit a hospital overseas, you’ll most likely need to pay on the spot. Don’t expect countries with free health care, like Canada, to pick up your tab: Coverage is intended for citizens only.” That could result in tens of thousands of dollars in medical bills if you or your volunteer is hit by a car or stepped on by an elephant during a local festival as one of our short-term workers literally had happen to him a couple years ago.
“If you know a short-term group going overseas or are going on your own, it is important that you invest the $35 or so per person to protect them. It’s a small part of the overall price of a trip and will protect you against thousands of dollars in VISA bills and/or substandard care.” says Jeff Gulleson of Good Neighbor Insurance. “Some health insurance policies cover overseas emergencies. But what exactly is an ‘emergency?’ Insurance companies usually insist that the condition could lead to death or permanent damage or they will not pay. Since there are a lot of situations you could face overseas that wouldn’t qualify as life threatening, why risk needless suffering by being uninsured?”
Although President Obama ‘s Healthcare Reform Bill requires all Americans have medical insurance, it will not change the insurance itself to cover Americans overseas. For you, your team, your staff, it is clear – “Travel At Your Own Risk.”
FACT: Americans have a 1 in 5 chance of getting sick or injured while on vacation, but only approximately 30% of Americans buy travel or overseas medical insurance when traveling overseas. – The U.S. Travel Insurance Association
No less than The U.S. State Department has warned U.S. citizens that, “Obtaining medical treatment and hospital care abroad can be expensive, and medical evacuation to the U.S. can cost more than $50,000….U.S. medical insurance is generally not accepted outside the United States, nor do the Medicare and Medicaid programs provide coverage for hospital or medical costs outside the United States. If your insurance policy does not cover you abroad, it is a good idea to consider purchasing a short-term policy that does.”
“The advantage of having an agency like ours help, is that we specialize in overseas travel and have multiple plans instead of having to apply again and again at different websites, as well as the expertise and background to recommend a program based on destination, local healthcare options, length of stay, and a number of other considerations” Says Jeff.
“Our services don’t cost extra. The insurance companies pay us out of their own commission, so those traveling should always call Good Neighbor if they have any questions about coverage for the type of trip they are taking.”
While the costs of health care continue to rise, and the Health Insurance Reform bill continues to generate controversy, Good Neighbor Insurance continues to provide inexpensive health insurance for those going overseas.
Jeff Gulleson established Good Neighbor Insurance in 1997, to provide global health and life insurance services after working 30 years in Indonesia.
GNI uses their expertise to help clients find good, cost-effective international health, travel, and life insurance while providing caring service based on integrity. The company serves students traveling overseas, short-term teams, aid organizations, foreign and domestic corporations, universities, and volunteers both from the U.S. and abroad, including across the border in Mexico and Haiti, as well as short-term projects and teams within the United States.
Our knowledgeable staff that have lived and worked for extended periods overseas and supports the work of those helping reduce poverty, aid in education and bring reconciliation in all areas of life.
For more information, contact Doug Gulleson at Good Neighbor Insurance, Toll Free: 866-636-9100 or in Phoenix, AZ: 480-813-9100
Good Neighbor Insurance, 690 E. Warner Rd. Suite 117, Gilbert, AZ 85296, USA