Health emergencies can occur at any time, even when you are traveling or are on a trip overseas. Getting hospitalized internationally and availing of medical services overseas can be quite an expensive affair. Health care cost in foreign countries is much higher in comparison to India. So, how can you cover your cost and save your travel plan or budget from getting ruined?
Simply by purchasing an international health insurance plan. Let’s take a detailed look at what is an international health insurance plan and how can it be beneficial for you.
What is international health insurance?
International health insurance is a kind of insurance policy for travel that offers coverage for medical emergencies while travelling or staying abroad. It provides protection against unforeseen medical emergencies and financial security for hospitalization costs or accidents. It also allows policyholders to avail of any healthcare services they may wish for during their travel. Basically, an international health insurance plan helps the policyholder cover their medical expenses and ensure their safety while on a trip. International health insurance can be bought for any travel purpose - vacation or business.
Difference between international health insurance and travel health insurance
International health insurance provides a wide-ranging level of health care to those who leave their home country for a more extended journey or a certain period of time. In contrast, travel insurance provides cover for emergency treatment while you are in an international country for a shorter span.
Travel insurance plans are designed to cover foreign trips of a limited duration. It is intended to offer protection against travel-related issues like;
In terms of medical coverage, travel insurance provides short-term emergency medical treatment which is within your specified area or period of cover while in an international country. Travel insurance is designed to cover urgent medical treatment and then get you back home. If any other cure is required, you will be first sent back to your home country, and once back home, the travel insurance cover ceases.
On the other hand, international health insurance is intended for those living or working overseas for a prolonged period of time. It covers treatment for both routine and emergency healthcare when in a foreign country. It also offers flexibility in terms of choice of treatment facility or health care provider with the ability to obtain treatment anywhere within the region of the cover.
When you are travelling to a foreign country where you may not speak the language or are not aware of the health care system, an international health insurance plan helps you get the proper medical care, whether an emergency or routine. International health insurance offers protection for treatment internationally, including;
Exclusions to international health insurance
In many countries, the local health care options do not meet your needs or are extremely expensive as you may fall ill there. International health insurance gives the coverage to protect your costs and the choice of medical providers as well. Exclusions to international health insurance include;
The flexibility of international health insurance plans can help you tailor them as per your specific needs while in a foreign country and cover expensive medical care making you and your family financially accessible.
Benefits of purchasing international health insurance
While travelling overseas, if you fall ill and pay for medical care, it may be a financial hit to your budget. Climate change, the difference in time zone or worsening of any pre-existing condition while on an international trip can significantly impact your health and put you at risk. International health insurance offers the right coverage and protection while you are overseas, managing your health as well as your finance precisely.
The wide-ranging benefits of international health insurance are;
International health insurance is highly beneficial for all travelling abroad or going to stay overseas for a while.
How to buy international health insurance?
International health insurance can be easily purchased online from your choice of healthcare insurance provider. All you need to do is;
You can also purchase international health insurance offline by meeting the insurance company or through an agent.
Claim procedure for international health insurance
In case of an emergency while in a foreign country, firstly inform your insurer or the third-party assistance provider about your medical situation. Then, get the medical treatment coverage as offered in your plan. Arrange for relevant documents as needed for claim settlement by the insurer. Submit all the documents either online or offline via post as feasible. Post verification, the claims team of the insurance company shall settle the claim. There is the option of cashless claims as well. In case of cashless claims, the insurer will clear the bill directly with their network hospital abroad once your treatment is over.
Remember, in case your plan has expired while on a foreign trip, you can quickly get it renewed online by visiting the insurer's website and following simple plan renewal instructions.
When you travel overseas for either work, business, tourism, or studies, anything can go wrong. Medical emergencies can occur at any time, anywhere. So, to handle such situations, international health insurance can be of crucial help in getting the best medical assistance without worrying about the expense while in a foreign country.
FAQs – Frequently asked questions.
Let's take a look at some frequent queries on international health insurance;
Q1: Can burglary in a foreign country be covered by international health insurance?
Yes, in case you lose your wallet or your money or belongings are stolen in a foreign country, your international insurance plan covers the same.
Q2: Do insurers provide COVID 19 cover in foreign travel?
Yes, with the changing times due to the pandemic, the international insurance plans have started including COVID 19 treatment costs covered during overseas travel or stay as well.
Q3: Is hijack covered in an international insurance plan?
Although a less likely situation, hijack is a traumatic experience and is covered in international health insurance plans provided by many insurers under distress allowance.
Q4: Do I need to get a health check-up done before buying international health insurance?
No, a medical health check-up is not needed while traveling overseas unless you are of age 65 years or above.
Q5: Can international insurance be bought for anyone?
Yes, anyone can buy international health insurance if traveling abroad regardless of age, the purpose of travel, or any existing condition.