What American Expats Need to Know Before Purchasing an International Health Insurance Plan

International health insurance plans are popular among expats and travelers. They have gained a lot of fame over the years, and for a good reason. You will likely need medical care when away in a foreign land, and a global health plan will save you a lot of trouble. It will cater to medical emergencies and other routine examinations by a general physician.

Such a cover will protect you against financial loss, allowing you to access medical care with ease. However, there are various things to consider when choosing such a cover. There are also things to know as an American expat seeking an international medical plan.

What is an international insurance plan& and why do I need it?

International medical coverage benefits both travelers and expats in foreign counties. It offers long-term medical cover for you and your family members overseas and caters to diverse health conditions. With such a medical plan, you can easily access different medical services.

The good thing about medical travel insurance for US citizens living abroad is that it caters to medical expenses and other costs associated with the treatment. For instance, it covers evacuation, ambulance fees, and the travel expenses of a loved one who may need to accompany you for treatment.

The benefits vary from one insurance plan to another, but some policies allow for customization, whereby you can include the essential services. Is it worth it? As mentioned earlier, an international insurance plan offers numerous gains. First of all, it eases access to care, allowing you to seek medical services from different providers.

With such a plan, you can choose to be examined by your preferred health provider. You also save a lot of stress during medical emergencies, which can be costly. In this case, the cover protects you against financial loss. Also, you can easily access day-to-day or routine treatment by using the policy. The idea here is; the insurance plan makes it easy to access different medical services and benefits in a wide range of countries.

When purchasing an international medical insurance cover as an American expat, what should I know?

There are multiple risks associated with not having insurance cover. You never know when you’ll need medical treatment, and the bills can be overwhelming. Therefore, it’s wise to purchase an international medical plan to help cater to your medical expenses. As a US citizen, this will save you a lot of stress and make it easy to meet visa requirements in your host country. Here’s what to know;

1. Your domestic US Health Insurance plan is never enough.

You’re probably asking why you need international medical cover while you have domestic insurance cover. Well, this will cover you in some regions in the US. However, it offers limited coverage in other counties and won’t be enough to cater to your medical needs.

Again, the US government strongly recommends carrying private health insurance when traveling overseas. It will cater to general and emergency medical treatment in your host country.

2. Research helps!

There are different international medical insurance plans, and not all will include the desired benefits. Before purchasing any cover, research adequately and gather as much information as possible. Search for information from different ravel and expat forums; to learn of the policies and what suits your needs. Also, check the health insurance plans comparison chart to aid you in choosing the best insurance plan for your budget and lifestyle.

3. The plan benefits matter

International insurance covers offer a wide variety of benefits, which vary between service providers. The health insurance covers expats, and those moving abroad is broader than typical holiday or business travel cover. The plan will cover things like;

  • Local health care services
  • Medical emergencies
  • Maternity care
  • Treatment for ongoing conditions

Before choosing any insurance plan, examine the benefits included and only purchase a cover that you’re comfortable with.

4. The maximum limit is key!

The maximum limit is what the insurance company will pay for the claims. This varies depending on the policy or plan purchased, and you should go for a plan offering a maximum limit amount. You may sometimes require specialized care, and this can be costly. Again, some plans have limits for certain medical processes, and you may be forced to top up the amount. It’s then vital to choose a plan with a high coverage limit.

 5. Know the care needed & the policy exclusions

What type of services do you seek? Do you prefer a plan offering inpatient or outpatient services? Some expats choose a cover offering inpatient services to save on the premiums since this can be costly in some areas. Decide whether you want inpatient, outpatient services, or both before choosing the policy. Moreover, review the policy documents and learn of the exclusions beforehand.

The bottom line

Moving abroad as an expat requires proper planning, and purchasing an international insurance cover should form part of it. This will save you a lot of money in case of medical emergencies or costly medical procedures. However, it only works best when you purchase the cover from a reputed insurance company.

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